After Dean Obeidallah wrote a Daily Beast article in 2017 condemning President Trump's actions against white supremacist terror, the Daily Stormer website falsely accused Obeidallah of being behind an ISIS attack.
Now the founder of the Daily Stormer is forced to pay him millions for the smear.
Obeidallah, a comedian and radio presenter, sued the founder of the Daily Stormer, Andrew Anglin, for defamation, and on Wednesday, a judge sentenced Anglin to pay $ 4.1 million in damages.
"The judge apparently found what they were doing so cruel that he inflicted as much punitive damage as possible," Obeidallah told the Daily Beast.
He said he plans to give the money to organizations fighting against bigotry.
"It was never about collecting money. If I collect a dime from the Nazis, I will not keep their money. I will give it to organizations that fight hatred and bigotry, the very groups the Nazis despise. "
Anglin, who has been on the run for more than a year, has not testified, though his father did.The verdict is the recent legal strike against Anglin, which is currently another lawsuit filed by a Jewish woman who received death threats after Anglin attacked her on his site
In Obeidallah's case, the harassment started after he wrote an article titled: "Will Donald Trump ever use the words" White Supremacist Terrorism? " say? "
" We've already had three to four acts of violence, murders, of people who were self proclaimed white supremacists. The thesis of my article was that Trump demanded during his campaign that we say "radical Islamic terrorism". Why does not he say the words "white supremacist terrorism"? Said Obeidallah, who is a Muslim.
"That's the eye of Andrew Anglin at the Daily Stormer, who wrote an article the next day quoted my article and smeared me in the first line as an ISIS mastermind. "
" They invented tweets that looked real and involved me in the bombing of Manchester. "
According to Obeidallah's lawsuit, the tweets handled were posted on the Stormer website, a once-popular site that received approximately 3.18 million page views during the article was active. (The Stormer lost his reputation after being thrown by his old webhost.)
Stormer readers piled up and sent death threats to Obeidallah. The attacks took their toll, he said. While Obeidallah once had little hesitation in meeting fans, he said he was now more cautious about arranging meetings with people who register online.
Juvaria Khan, a senior lawyer for Muslim lawyers who helped Obeidallah in his case, said The court's ruling was an expression of the consequences of hate speech.
"We live in a climate where people feel encouraged to express their views on marginalized communities, including American Muslims," Khan said. "This case is a very significant victory. We are very proud of our client Dean, that he got up and showed that violence and bigotry are not tolerated. "
Obeidallah hopes that victory may be a" roadmap "for people from other fringe groups who take legal action against them, white supremacists.
"The idea is to send a message: If you attack those groups you despise, in my case Muslims or Jews or the LGBT community or African Americans, we will not duck," he said.
"We will hold you accountable by going to federal court and sueing you, and we will win this verdict against you."