A decide in Florida agreed Thursday to switch ex-prosecutor Linda Fairstein’s defamation lawsuit in opposition to Netflix to New York, discovering that may be a extra applicable venue for the case involving a TV collection in regards to the Central Park 5.
Fairstein filed the swimsuit in March, alleging that she was wrongfully depicted in “When They See Us” as a racist prosecutor who orchestrated the railroading of 5 harmless youngsters. She additionally sued director Ava DuVernay and author Attica Locke.
She filed the case in federal court docket in Florida, the place she now lives, arguing that was a authentic venue as a result of the collection was broadcast there. Florida additionally falls inside the eleventh Circuit Court docket of Appeals, which had beforehand barred the use of state anti-SLAPP legal guidelines, which defend defendants from frivolous libel fits.
Netflix nonetheless sought to invoke the California anti-SLAPP legislation to have the case dismissed. The streamer’s attorneys conceded that the eleventh Circuit prohibited such a movement, however they argued that the case ought to be heard in New York, which allowed them. However in July, the 2nd Circuit Court docket of Appeals, which covers New York, joined the eleventh Circuit in ruling that the California anti-SLAPP statute doesn’t apply in federal court docket. (The statute remains to be legitimate in federal court docket within the ninth Circuit, which covers California.)
Netflix subsequently withdrew the movement, conceding that the movement would fare no higher in New York than in Florida.
In the meantime, on Thursday, U.S. District Decide John Badalamenti granted Netflix’s movement to switch the case to New York. Badalamenti, whose court docket is in Fort Myers, Fla., discovered that it might be extra handy for the events and witnesses to conduct the case in New York.
“The occasions depicted within the Sequence happen virtually completely in New York,” the decide wrote. “Ms. Fairstein’s function within the Sequence facilities on
her former profession as a prosecutor in New York and her interactions with colleagues in New York. The trials of the 5 passed off in New York.”
Fairstein’s lawyer, Andrew Miltenberg stated he expects to prevail.
“Regardless of the place this lawsuit is heard, we’re terribly assured within the deserves of our case and the truth that Netflix, Ms. DuVernay and Ms. Locke engaged in defamation and a false and cruel portrayal of Ms. Fairstein,” Miltenberg stated in a press release.