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Gawker Seeks Retrial in Hogan Case

  • VOA News

FILE - Former professional wrestler Hulk Hogan, left, stands with attorney Seema Ghatnekar, in a courtroom in St. Petersburg, Fla., March 18, 2016. A jury awarded Hogan $115 million in an invasion of privacy case against Gawker Media.

FILE - Former professional wrestler Hulk Hogan, left, stands with attorney Seema Ghatnekar, in a courtroom in St. Petersburg, Fla., March 18, 2016. A jury awarded Hogan $115 million in an invasion of privacy case against Gawker Media.

A gossip website ordered to pay tens of million of dollars to a professional wrestler for violating his privacy, wants another trial.

New York-based Gawker Media, which in 2012 posted a video of Hulk Hogan having sex, asked for a new trial hoping the $140.1 million award in March will be reduced or eliminated.

"Gawker is now beginning the process of challenging the jury's verdict in a trial where key evidence was wrongly withheld and the jury was not properly instructed on the Constitutional standards for newsworthiness,'' a company statement said. "So we expect to be fully vindicated. And even if the verdict were to stand, there is no justification for awarding tens of millions of dollars never seen by victims of death and serious injuries.''

Hogan’s legal team said it believed it would win again.

"We emerged victorious once and we plan to do so again,'' the team said in a statement. "Of note it is apparent Gawker is unable to accept responsibility for their actions or demonstrate any intention of correcting their behavior.''

Hogan, 62, argued that the video violated his privacy by showing him in an intimate situation with the wife of a friend. Hogan said the friend – a radio personality known as "Bubba the Love Sponge Clem" – recorded the video without Hogan's knowledge or consent.

Gawker says the jury in the first trial was prevented from hearing about other court rulings in favor of the site, and that it was barred from seeing evidence from the FBI as well as being prohibited from hearing the testimony of a witness.

In the first trial, Gawker argued that posting the video of Hogan was protected by the First Amendment and that Hogan’s sex life was in the public interest because the wrestler had talked openly about the tape before it was released.

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