A federal judge will let a jury decide whether conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ Infowars website had a legal right to sell a poster featuring the image of Pepe the Frog, a character that became hijacked by far-right extremists.
U.S. District Judge Michael Fitzgerald in Los Angeles refused Thursday to throw out a copyright infringement lawsuit against Infowars over its poster sales filed by Pepe’s creator, California artist Matt Furie.
Lawyers for Furie and Infowars both said they were pleased by the ruling.
Infowars’ attorney, Marc Randazza, says the decision preserves his client’s key free speech defences against Furie’s claims and limits any possible award to a maximum of roughly $13,000.
Louis Tompros, one Furie’s lawyers, says his client looks forward to asking jurors to hold Infowars accountable for misusing Pepe.
Michael Kunzelman, The Associated Press