Brown v. Maxwell

Victims of billionaire financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein seek to nullify his plea agreement (which strikes some as being too lenient). One victim accuses the financier’s friend of recruiting victims, which the friend denies. The victim then sues the friend for defamation. The defamation case eventually settles after much of it, including the entire summary judgment record, is litigated under seal. Did the district court err by not allowing the public access to more material? Alan Dershowitz, Miami Herald, and Michael Cernovich: Yes! Second Circuit: In large part, yes. But we “urge the media to exercise restraint in covering potentially defamatory allegations, and we caution the public to read such accounts with discernment.”

Tags: 2019, Defamation, First Amendment, Second Circuit

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