Clock Boy’s Defamation Lawsuit Attacked as Lawfare: AFLC Lawyers Ask Court to Award Sanctions

aflc_clockboyToday, lawyers for the Center for Security Policy (“CSP”) and Jim Hanson filed a motion in a Dallas, Texas court seeking to dismiss the defamation lawsuit filed by Mohamed Mohamed on his own behalf and on behalf of his 15-year old son, Ahmed Mohamed.

Ahmed is better known as “Clock Boy” for bringing a hoax clock bomb to his Irving, Texas middle school in September 2015 and causing a bomb scare that led to his arrest and suspension from school.  Later, Ahmed claimed the look-a-like briefcase bomb was just a “homemade clock.”  In reality it was neither a bomb nor a homemade clock, but a disassembled digital clock put in a small carrying case giving it the look of an improvised digital bomb or trigger for a bomb.

The Clock Boy’s lawsuit seeks unspecified damages from various media companies and personalities, such as Glenn Beck, the Glenn Beck Show, and the local Fox News station, for commenting on the hoax bomb affair during their programs.

Jim Hanson, a CSP senior vice president, a former member of the U.S. Army Special Forces, and an expert on counter-terrorism, was sued along with CSP and the other media defendants for suggesting that the entire affair was a PR stunt by Clock Boy’s father in order to generate a media firestorm about anti-Islamic bias and Muslim-victimization.

During Hanson’s appearance on the Glenn Beck Show, Hanson noted that the Clock Boy’s father had orchestrated an intense media campaign with the local chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (“CAIR”), which the U.S. government has formally linked to the Muslim Brotherhood and to the designated terrorist organization Hamas in several formal court filings in federal terrorism cases.

Hanson went on to explain that the entire affair had the look and feel of a typical “influence operation”—the standard operating procedure of what the Muslim Brotherhood calls its “civilization jihad” against the West.

The motion to dismiss, filed by the American Freedom Law Center (“AFLC”), along with AFLC’s local Texas counsel Pete Rowe, not only seeks dismissal of the lawsuit, but also requests the court to award attorneys’ fees and to sanction Clock Boy’s father for filing a meritless lawsuit whose only purpose is to silence those who might speak out publicly against such influence operations.

David Yerushalmi, AFLC co-founder and senior counsel, issued the following statement:

“This lawsuit filed by Clock Boy’s father is yet another example of Islamist lawfare, which is a component of the Muslim Brotherhood’s civilization jihad.”

Yerushalmi further explained that the purpose of such lawsuits, formally labelled Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (“SLAPP”), is to intimidate into silence those who might comment publicly on the connection between jihad, terrorism, sharia, and Islam.

“The Islamists employ the progressive mainstream media to label any public criticism of a sharia-centric, jihad-driven Islam as ‘Islamophobic,’ and they add fear and financial ruin to the equation by utilizing the legal system to file SLAPP actions,”

Yerushalmi added.

Texas, like California and a number of other states, has an anti-SLAPP statute that requires a court to dismiss such lawsuits and to sanction those plaintiffs who file them.

Robert Muise, AFLC’s other co-founder and senior counsel, made clear:

“AFLC was formed in large measure to take on Islamists like CAIR who use and abuse the legal system with their cynical form of lawfare to undermine our constitutional liberties—notably free speech.  We have confronted these lawsuits across the country in federal and state courts and have defeated CAIR and its minions at every turn.  When appropriate, we have won sanctions.  This lawsuit will be no different.”