Facing a defamation lawsuit filed against him by Greek yogurt manufacturer Chobani, Infowars host Alex Jones complied with a settlement agreement which required him to retract negative comments he made in a broadcast last month about the company’s refugee workers.
His apology went like this:
“During the week of April 10, 2017, certain statements were made on the Infowars, Twitter feed and YouTube channel regarding Chobani LLC that I now understand to be wrong. The tweets and video have now been retracted, and will not be re-posted. On behalf of Infowars, I regret that we mischaracterized Chobani, its employees and the people of Twin Falls, Idaho, the way we did.”
This is the second time this year that Jones has had to apologize and issue a retraction. In March, he was forced to publicly say he was sorry to a Washington, D.C.-based pizzeria for pushing a story about an unproven child sex ring involving Hillary Clinton.
Jones apparently isn’t having much luck in his personal life, either. He recently lost a high-profile custody case against his ex-wife regarding who his three children would live with. As a radio show and web TV host, Jones is known for spreading conspiracy theories and delivering highly energized rants, but during the custody case his lawyers told the court that his on-air personality was just a performance. In other words, it’s all a show.
As the owner of a YouTube channel that broadcasts to more than 2 million subscribers, Jones landed in hot water after publishing and promoting a video headlined, “Idaho Yogurt Maker Caught Importing Migrant Rapists.”
According to the lawsuit, which was filed in U.S. District Court in Twin Falls last month, the link to Jones’ video had received upwards of 22,000 views as of April 21, and a post advertising it on Twitter was retweeted 147 times.
Jones’ statements “have caused and continue to cause harm to Idaho residents, including Chobani employees, their families and other members of the Twin Falls community,” charged the lawsuit, which asked that Jones pay damages in excess of $10,000, issue a retraction and remove all of the posts associated with the story. Chobani reportedly considers the matter to now be resolved.
Founded in 2005 by Turkish immigrant Hamdi Ulukaya, the Chobani Greek yogurt company was born in an old Kraft yogurt plant in New York. In just six years, the company had outgrown its birthplace, so Ulukaya expanded the business by building a $450-million plant in Twin Falls.
Vocal about his plan to hire refugees, Ulukaya was honored for his humanitarian work in 2015 with a Global Leadership Award from the United Nations Foundation.
Twin Falls residents embraced the company and its refugee workers, since the town has a decades-long history of taking in hundreds of refugees annually. Today, the Chobani factory employs 1,000 workers, including hundreds of refugees. “If a refugee has a job, they are no longer a refugee.” Ulukaya has said.
Jones initially pushed back against theChobani lawsuit, stating a few weeks ago, “You just ran into a Texan. So you get ready, because we’re never backing down and our audience is never backing down.” Well, it appears he didn’t mean it, once again.
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