Smartmatic voting equipment company has filed a lawsuit against Fox News and two lawyers for Donald Trump over reports that it facilitated election fraud during the last US elections. The company is asking for $2.7 billion as compensation for the allegations.
Last month, Dominion, a Smartmatic rival, also sued two of the named defendants – Trump’s ex-legal representatives, Rudy Guilliani and Sydney Powell, over similar allegations of voter fraud they made against it. Dominion supplied the e-voting equipment used in 24 states while Smartmatic only supplied voting equipment used in LA County where President Joe Biden recorded over 3 million votes.
After the declaration of Biden’s win in the county, Fox News broadcast several reports alleging that Smartmatic had helped to overturn the results in the county to favor Biden, the company explained in the complaint, adding that the outlet alleged that the electoral fraud had been done with the help of Hugo Chavez, the former president of Venezuela.
The company stated that even after ex-AG William Barr announced that the allegations were baseless, the news outlet persisted in the “smear campaign” against it.
Smartmatic is accusing Fox News anchors Lou Dobbs, Jeanine Pirro, and Maria Bartiromo of directly profiting from the smear campaign. It said the news outlet also benefitted through ratings as Trump supporters were abandoning Fox News and going for other far-right leaning news agencies. Fox News has denounced the claims against it and the three anchors, insisting that it is ready to defend all it reported in the aftermath of the election, CNN reports.
The company said it has suffered gravely from the allegations against it, with its workers and their family receiving death threats on social media. Many of its clients are also threatening to take their businesses elsewhere, Smartmatic said, adding that it has estimated that it suffered a loss of over $690 million. The company also said it would be losing an additional $4.7 million to stop the hackers who have since been attacking its systems.
Antonio Mugica, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, said the company has faced many challenges as a result of the allegations against it. Mugica said the company had a foreign bank account closed, and Taiwan which was showing signs of doing business with the company has withdrawn its offer.
Mugica is from Venezuela and the company’s first major client was Chavez’s administration, two facts that could have started the allegations against the company. There has been no concrete evidence to support the allegations against Smartmatic, which has offered its services to other countries in the world. The company’s legal representative, J. Erik Connolly, won a $177 million suit against ABC News for derogatory remarks made against the products of a beef company.