WASHINGTON — A jury has awarded $148 million in damages to two former Georgia election workers who sued Rudy Giuliani for defamation. The workers, Wandrea “Shaye” Moss and her mother Ruby Freeman, claimed that Giuliani’s lies about them in 2020 led to racist threats and harassment. The damages verdict includes approximately $75 million for each of the former election workers.
During the trial, Moss and Freeman emotionally described the impact of the false conspiracy theory pushed by Giuliani and other Republicans. The theory sought to undermine the 2020 election results and keep then-President Donald Trump in power. In addition to the punitive damages, the women were each awarded about $36 million for other damages.
Giuliani, former mayor of New York City, showed no emotion when the verdict was read and vowed to appeal. He claimed that the large sum of money highlights the absurdity of the case. Giuliani had already been found liable in the case and admitted to falsely accusing the women of ballot fraud.
The defense tried to shift blame to a right-wing website that published surveillance video of the two women counting ballots. However, Giuliani’s lawyer acknowledged that his client was wrong but argued that he was not solely responsible for the vitriol the women faced.
This judgment adds to Giuliani’s growing legal and financial troubles. He has been facing lawsuits and investigations related to his representation of Trump and his involvement in spreading false claims of election fraud. Giuliani’s lawyer suggested that the defamation case could financially ruin the former mayor.
Despite the verdict, Giuliani continues to repeat his baseless allegations about the workers. He has also been charged with criminal offenses in Georgia, along with Trump and 18 others, for attempting to subvert the 2020 election results. Giuliani maintains his plea of not guilty and characterizes the case as politically motivated.
In the defamation trial, jurors heard recordings of Giuliani falsely accusing the election workers of various fraudulent actions. Trump also perpetuated the conspiracy theories through his social media accounts. The women’s lawyers played audio recordings of the racist threats they received.
Moss and Freeman asked for at least $24 million each in defamation damages alone, in addition to compensation for emotional harm and punitive damages. The trial showcased the fear and trauma experienced by the women, who received hateful messages and had to change their appearance for safety.
The judge in the case had previously ordered Giuliani to pay attorneys’ fees, holding him liable for failing to comply with his legal obligations. The jury’s verdict further emphasizes the repercussions of Giuliani’s false claims and the impact they had on the lives of the two election workers.
In conclusion, a jury has awarded $148 million in damages to two former Georgia election workers who sued Rudy Giuliani for defamation. The case highlighted the racist threats and harassment the women faced due to Giuliani’s false conspiracy theories. Giuliani plans to appeal the verdict, but the judgment adds to his legal and financial troubles as he faces other lawsuits and criminal charges related to his role in spreading false claims of election fraud.