New York (CNN Business)The families of Sandy Hook victims allege that Alex Jones’ company Free Speech Systems has “systematically transferred millions of dollars” to Jones, his family and companies he controls in order to avoid compensating victims’ families, according to a court filing.
The Thursday filing from attorneys for the families was made as part of a Texas bankruptcy case for Free Speech Systems.
The nine families are asking the bankruptcy court to order Jones to relinquish his control over the company and appoint an independent committee to investigate its conduct and operations to “ensure transparency, accountability and maximize the Debtor’s Estate for all creditors.”
CNN has reached out to an attorney for Free Speech Systems and Jones for comment.
The families have painted a picture of a company that is “being drained into insolvency to benefit insiders to the detriment of creditors,” the filing states. Sandy Hook families are considered “creditors” in the Free Speech Systems bankruptcy case, after they sued Jones and his companies for intentional infliction of emotional distress and defamation, among other claims.
One of the allegations are related to Free Speech Systems’ claim that it owes nearly $54 million to a company called PQPR that is owned by Jones’ parents. The filing claims that 72% of payments to PQPR go to Jones, and the rest to his mother and father, adding that money the company pays to PQPR “ends up in Jones’ pockets.”
In the summer of 2021, after default judgments were entered in Sandy Hook families’ lawsuits in Texas and later in Connecticut, Free Speech Systems was allegedly transferring between $11,000 a day and $11,000 a week to PQPR, the filing states.
The families have alleged that Jones has siphoned between $18 million and $62 million from Free Speech systems during the Sandy Hook lawsuits, even though the company claimed to be unable to pay debts it owed, the filing states.
Earlier this month, a jury heard testimony from an economist who estimated that Jones has a net worth of between $135 million and $270 million. The economist, Bernard Pettingill, Jr., examined several years of records for Jones and Free Speech Systems, the parent company of Infowars, and said Jones used a series of shell companies to hide his money.
Jones used two large loans to make it appear he was broke when in fact he was not, Pettingill, Jr. testified in that trial, in which the jury awarded plaintiffs Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis $49.3 million for his Jones’ lies about the mass shooting that left 20 children and six adults dead.
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