BuzzFeed faces a new lawsuit over its publication of an unverified dossier of claims against President Trump and others, McClatchy reported Friday evening.
McClatchy says XBT Holdings, a tech firm with Russian ties named in the document, is suing BuzzFeed, editor in chief Ben Smith and former British spy Christopher Steele over the January 10 publication of what the suit calls “libelous, unverified and untrue allegations.”
The dossier, which includes uncorroborated allegations about Trump, claims the Cyprus-based XBT, which is owned by Russian tech magnate Aleksej Gubarev, “had been using botnets and porn traffic to transmit viruses, plant bugs, steal data and conduct ‘altering operations’ against the Democratic Party leadership” in 2016.
Smith has defended the decision to publish, but in a Friday statement to McClatchy, BuzzFeed apologized over Gubarev’s inclusion.
“We have redacted Mr. Gubarev’s name from the published dossier, and apologize for including it,” spokesman Matt Mittenthal said.
The lawsuit, filed in London and Fort Lauderdale, Fla., seeks unspecified damages. It says BuzzFeed’s story has been viewed nearly 6 millions times.