Michael Flynn’s brother sues CNN for $75M over QAnon reports
John “Jack” Flynn, brother of former national security adviser and retired Gen. Michael Flynn, and his wife Leslie are suing CNN for $75 million in a defamation lawsuit filed in federal court Thursday.
“Plaintiffs are not followers or supporters of any extremist or terrorist groups, including QAnon,” the suit states. “CNN falsely attributed to Plaintiffs associations that never existed, actions Plaintiffs never took, including an oath of allegiance to QAnon, and views Plaintiffs never held.”
“CNN’s false attributions exposed Plaintiffs to public scorn, ridicule and contempt, and lowered their esteem in the community, causing insult, embarrassment, humiliation and substantial injury to Plaintiffs’ reputations,” it continued.
The Flynns filed the case with a request for a jury trial in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York claiming that a Feb. 4 CNN report falsely accused them of being followers and supporters of QAnon.
Specifically, the lawsuit states that in its report, CNN used an edited version of a video — first posted to Twitter by Michael Flynn on July 4 — “fraudulently making it appear and insinuating that [Jack and Leslie] pledged an oath of allegiance to QAnon.”
The suit also states that after “the January 6 storming of the Capitol, a chorus of left-wing media outlets began to spread false narratives about QAnon, including that Jack Flynn’s brother, retired Lieutenant General Michael T. Flynn (‘General Flynn’), was the ‘founder’ of QAnon.”
“As a policy we don’t comment on litigation,” a CNN spokesperson told The Hill, when asked about the suit. CNN has not yet filed a legal response to the suit, according to a federal court website.
Flynn’s brother Michael Flynn pleaded guilty in December 2017 to making false statements to the FBI regarding his contacts with top Russian diplomats, and agreed to participate in former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign and Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election.
Flynn ultimately withdrew the plea and in May the Justice Department dropped the charges against him. Flynn emerged nationally again last year backing former President Trump’s false claims that the 2020 election was subverted by widespread voter fraud.
In mid-March, the Army said it was reviewing a Department of Defense probe into Michael Flynn’s international dealings, a spokesperson for the Army confirmed to The Hill.