Alex Jones Loses Bid to Avoid Fines After Agreeing to Sit for Deposition

Far-right media personality Alex Jones will appear for a deposition in the lawsuit over his conspiracy theories about the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting, his lawyers said after a Connecticut judge ruled that Jones would face daily fines starting Friday. The daily fines will start at $25,000 and increase by $25,000 for each weekday he refuses to appear.

The lawyers said Wednesday that April 11 was the next date Jones would be available, and on Thursday, they filed a request for Judge Barbara Bellis to hold the daily fines. Friday, Bellis rejected that motion from Jones' attorneys, meaning Jones is now set to be fined as much as $525,000 total over the next six weekdays until April 11.

The plaintiffs, consisting of Sandy Hook victims' family members, also filed an objection to Jones' motion, claiming that his commitment to appear at a deposition on April 11 was not sufficient grounds to halt the fines.

Bellis found Jones in contempt of court on Wednesday over insufficient evidence that he skipped depositions scheduled for last week because of medical issues, setting the daily fines as a penalty until a deposition was completed, Newsweek previously reported.

Jones has been a prominent figure on the far right for years, and the Sandy Hook hoax claims made repeatedly on his Infowars show are some of his most well-known. Jones is being sued for defamation over his repeated claims that the 2012 shooting at a Connecticut school that killed 20 children and six staff members never happened, saying the parents of the dead children were "crisis actors" hired to stage the attack by politicians pushing a gun control agenda.

Two judges, Bellis in Connecticut and another in Jones' home state of Texas, have found him guilty and liable for damages by "default" over what was ruled to be a lack of key evidence provided by his attorneys that was requested by the plaintiffs. Legal proceedings are ongoing to determine how much Jones will be required to pay in damages to the families of the shooting victims who are suing him.

Jones missed depositions last week related to the Connecticut trial scheduled for later this year on claims of health reasons, but Bellis ruled that there was insufficient evidence to prove he was medically unable to be deposed, Newsweek has reported. Jones continued to appear on his daily Infowars show in person or by phone every day around the time of the scheduled depositions.

Bellis also ruled Wednesday that future depositions would be held at the offices of the attorneys in Connecticut, rather than closer to Jones' home in Texas, where the skipped depositions were scheduled to be held last week.

Also Wednesday, the families suing Jones rejected a settlement offer from his attorneys for $120,000 each, as they said the offer was a "transparent and desperate attempt by Alex Jones to escape a public reckoning under oath with his deceitful, profit-driven campaign against the plaintiffs and the memory of their loved ones lost at Sandy Hook," Newsweek previously reported. Jones has said that he no longer believes the shooting was staged and has also claimed the suits don't have enough evidence to prove defamation, and that they are violations of his freedom of speech.

Update 4/1/22, 3:45 p.m. ET: This story has been updated with the information that Jones' attempt to halt the fines was rejected.

Update 3/31/22, 4:15 p.m. ET: This story has been updated with additional information.

Alex Jones Sandy Hook Fines
Alex Jones has agreed to appear in a deposition for the lawsuit over his conspiracy theories about the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting just a day after a Connecticut judge ruled that he will be fined daily until he does so. Above, Jones, the founder of right-wing media group Infowars, addresses a crowd of pro-Trump protesters January 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C. Jon Cherry/Getty Images