In a lawsuit filed today in the United States District Court for the New Jersey District, Binance claimed an article published by Forbes was defamatory and caused “millions of dollars” in damages.
Although there are already questions about the merits of the lawsuit, one thing is no longer in doubt: Binance is serious.
Binance has hired the services of Charles Harder, the attorney best known for representing Hulk Hogan (Terry Gene Bollea) in a lawsuit against Gawker Media. He received $ 115 million in damages and $ 25 million punitive damages for his client in 2016 after the accused posted parts of a sex video on his website.
Harder’s actions immediately led to the fall of Gawker Media. Peter Thiel, the billionaire founder of Palantir and co-founder of PayPal, helped fund the lawsuits after Gawker posted a headline mentioning Thiel’s sexual orientation.
Harder has also made headlines more recently when he represented Donald J. Trump in another sexual assault case brought against the President of the United States by Stormy Daniels (real name Stephanie Clifford). At the time, Harder was on the winning side with an anti-SLAPP motion. A “strategic public participation lawsuit” is defined as a lawsuit designed to intimidate and silence critics at the high cost of legal defense into giving up their opposition or criticism. and it has become the favorite tactic of corporations and high profile figures, including politicians.
Harder has also represented other members of the Trump family, including Melania Trump. In a lawsuit against the British daily Daily Mail Harder raised $ 2.9 million and apologized after the tabloid suggested that Trump had “offered services other than modeling” earlier in his life. He has also represented Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law, on a Vanity Fair case.
Harder doesn’t always win, however. He did not file a threatening lawsuit against the New York Times on behalf of Harvey Weinstein and later withdrew his complaint.
It will seem harder pro hac vice (this time only) to take on the case and therefore Binance is not expected to be represented in any other legal proceedings.