South Florida

Trump, the Russian and a kitten. It’s a lawsuit made for BuzzFeed

Lawyers included a cat photo in their BuzzFeed-worthy filing.
Lawyers included a cat photo in their BuzzFeed-worthy filing.

Some lawyers will do anything to make a case.

Consider the latest in a Russian businessman's defamation lawsuit filed in Miami against BuzzFeed, the New York digital news site.

Responding to BuzzFeed’s motion to dismiss the suit, the Russian's lawyers titilatingly titled their filing: “Six Ways BuzzFeed Has Misled the Court (Number Two Will Amaze You) ... And a Picture of a Kitten.”

Whether the clickbait-like titles will grab the attention of U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro remains to be seen. Ungaro is not one to suffer fools gladly.

The Russian's lawyers want to keep the defamation case in Florida. BuzzFeed’s attorneys argue the suit should be thrown out because the Russian doesn't live here and the dispute has nothing to do with the state. They suggested, if anything, the case should be transferred to New York.

What's the case about? It's a sideshow to a colossal political story about allegations that Donald Trump's presidential campaign colluded with the Russian government before the November election to help him win.

Lawyers for the businessman are suing BuzzFeed for libel, claiming it defamed him when it published a dossier of information including unverified, sordid allegations about Trump's relationship with the Russians.

The technology executive, Aleksej Gubarez, is accused in the dossier of being involved in Russian efforts to hack the Democratic National Committee.

“While the dossier itself continues to generate intense international interest,” BuzzFeed’s lawyers say, “it is clear that this dispute about its publication has nothing to do with Florida.”

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