Ex-FL SEN candidate Jeff Greene (D) “is preparing to sue The St. Petersburg Times and The Miami Herald for libel, claiming that articles they published cost him” his SEN bid. While “a libel suit is a rare step for a political figure,” Greene has “proved he is no ordinary politician.” Greene “will seek at least” $500M in damages “to teach the news media a lesson.”
Greene, in a phone interview 8/31: “I want to send a message to every newspaper in the country: Do your homework. I deserve to have the record corrected, and they deserve to be punished.” Greene has hired atty L. Lin Wood, who “said he expected to file a formal complaint” in FL court 9/1.
“At issue are two news articles written by St. Petersburg Times reporters” that were also printed in the Miami Herald, along with a Times editorial “urging a federal investigation into” Greene’s “business activities.” St. Petersburg Times‘ ed. Neil Brown, in an email: “The Times’ coverage of Mr. Greene and his business transactions has been thorough and fair, and the reporting is well-documented in public records.”
The Times reported Greene “was party to a real estate deal that left” 300 CA families “homeless and a partner of his in jail.” Additionally, another article “left the impression” the boxer Mike Tyson “used drugs while on” Greene’s yacht. “The paper later ran a front-page correction clarifying” Tyson “said he had not used drugs on the yacht” (Peters, New York Times, 8/31).