Judge denies Gawker’s request for new trial in invasion-of-privacy case involving Hulk Hogan

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Judge denies Gawker’s request for new trial in invasion-of-privacy case involving Hulk Hogan

New controversy has taken birth as to whether Hulk Hogan‘s courtroom battle with Gawker Media, online news and gossip company, is being funded by Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel. Forbes and the New York Times have reported that Thiel is secretly backing Hogan.

In March, Hogan has won a $140 million invasion-of-privacy verdict against Gawkers for posting snippets of a leaked video showing Hogan having sex with then best friend’s wife. On Wednesday, Hogan and Gawker were present in a Florida court, where Judge Pamela Campbell refused Gawker’s request for a new trial and denied to lessen the damages.

Gawker’s attorneys asked the judge to allow them to seek evidence from the other side to know Thiel’s supposed involvement, but in that case also, the judge said no.

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Gawker said that it will take the case to an appeals court. As per legal experts, there is nothing illegal amount someone financing a lawsuit. There are companies that invest in contingency claims, and are known as litigation financing.

Hogan’s lawyers did not respond on the Thiel story, but have praised the judge for refusing to accept a new trial. On the other hand, Gawker said that the case is far from being over. Thiel and Gawkers did not get along well.

In fact, Thiel has criticized Valleywag, a gossip site that Gawker periodically ran during the past decade to unveil the secrets of Silicon Valley moguls. In a 2009 interview, Thiel has called Valleywag ‘the Silicon Valley equivalent of al-Qaida’ and also said that it relies on people who ‘should be described as terrorists, and not as writers or reporters’.

Hogan sued Gawker after it posted a 2007 video of him having sex with the wife of his best friend, Tampa radio personality, Bubba The Love Sponge Clem. Hogan said that Clem has betrayed him by secretly videotaping him.

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