Judge sanctions Fox News' lawyers for lying about evidence in Dominion case

Fox News illegally withheld evidence in the $1.6bn defamation lawsuit filed against it by Dominion Systems, the maker of voting machines that Fox's presenters falsely and knowingly claimed were rigged. At a pre-trial hearing today, Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric M. Davis told the company's lawyers they were liars and that evidence was "missing."

"I need people to tell me the truth," Davis said as he dressed down the network's attorneys. "And, by the way, omission is a lie." … Today's actions by the judge follow a bombshell courtroom disclosure yesterday that Rupert Murdoch is formally designated as executive chairman of Fox News in addition to serving as the chair of its parent company Fox Corp.

Judge Davis yesterday said Fox lawyers previously had "represented to him more than once" that Murdoch was not an officer for the subsidiary cable network. The issue holds great import for the media magnate and the parent company as its lawyers argue he had no influence over Fox's broadcasts amplifying the lies about Dominion.

It isn't over because it hasn't even started yet, but Fox News does seem in quite a pickle. A key mistake seems to be promoting Suzanne Scott to CEO after she was seen to have dealt swiftly and cheaply with the sexual harassment claims around Roger Ailes and other executives at the network. However good she was at that, emails disclosed in the case suggest that she's completely focused on feeding the right-wing political circus, and the legality of lying about people (or anything else) never crossed her mind.