Former US president Donald Trump’s lawyer is facing a $1.3bn (£952m) lawsuit over election fraud claims.
Rudy Giuliani has been accused of defaming a Denver-based voting machine company in a “big lie” campaign about widespread fraud in the presidential election, court documents showed.
The company, Dominion Voting Systems Inc, filed an earlier lawsuit against Trump campaign lawyer Sidney Powell, also accusing her of spreading false conspiracy theories after Joe Biden’s victory in the November election.
The company is seeking $1.3bn in damages from the 76-year-old former New York City mayor, alleging “he and his allies manufactured and disseminated the ‘Big Lie’, which foreseeably went viral and deceived millions of people into believing that Dominion had stolen their votes and fixed the election”.
Dominion is a major manufacturer of voting machines – a number of which were used in more than two dozen states during the 2020 election.
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As many prominent Republicans began distancing themselves from Mr Trumpt, Mr Giuliani is among the few who continue to promote discredited claims of election fraud.
Earlier this month, Mr Giuliani, who tested positive for coronavirus in December, tweeted that while he “rejected” the violence at the Capitol building, the aim was to end “voter fraud”.
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During a radio show last week, he said he was being attacked for “exercising my right of free speech and defending my client”.
Last week, a group of prominent lawyers asked New York’s judiciary to suspend Mr Giuliani’s law licence for making false claims in post-election lawsuits, as well as for urging Trump supporters to engage in “trial by combat” shortly before they stormed the Capitol.
Dominion also claimed in its lawsuit that it has spent $565,000 (£413,000) on private security to protect its employees, who were dealing with harassment and death threats.
Senior Dominion employee Eric Coomer has filed a separate defamation lawsuit against the Trump campaign, claiming he had been driven into hiding because of death threats from Trump supporters.
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Dominion’s lawsuit added: “Giuliani’s statements were calculated to – and did in fact – provoke outrage and cause Dominion enormous harm.”
Mr Giuliani and his lawyer, Robert Costello, have not responded to requests for comment.