Far-right activist Ammon Bundy ordered to pay Idaho hospital $52M after losing defamation lawsuit

July 27, 2023 in News by RBN Staff


Source: Daily News


Far-right activist Ammon Bundy and an associate were ordered to pay more than $52 million to a hospital in Idaho after losing a defamation lawsuit filed against them.

Bundy, a former Idaho gubernatorial candidate, and his close associate Diego Rodriguez were accused by St. Luke’s Regional Health of making defamatory statements against the hospital and its employees in early 2022. On Monday, a jury awarded the hospital $52.5 million in damages.

The 47-year-old anti-government militant was arrested on March 12 of last year on misdemeanor trespassing and resisting arrest charges after staging a protest in the hospital and refusing to leave the premises.

Bundy — who first made headlines in 2014 for participating in a confrontation with law enforcement near his family’s ranch in Nevada — urged his followers to show up at St. Luke’s after it was determined that Rodriguez’s infant grandson had to be taken to the hospital amid concerns for his health.

The 10-month-old baby had been admitted to the hospital on March 1 while suffering from severe malnourishment. He was discharged three days later after gaining enough weight. However, during a follow-up appointment, medical personnel determined that the child had lost weight again.

Bundy claimed Baby Cyrus had been “medically kidnapped” over a “missed non-emergency doctor’s appointment.”

Two months later, St. Luke’s filed a defamation suit against the anti-government activist, his associate, and their respective companies.

Supporters gather on the property of former Idaho gubernatorial candidate and far-right activist Ammon Bundy after law enforcement officers attempted to arrest Bundy on a misdemeanor warrant for contempt of court earlier in the day, on April 24, 2023, in Emmett, Idaho.

On Monday, a jury at the Ada County Courthouse in Boise agreed with the hospital, announcing the defendants would have to pay St. Luke’s $26.5 million in compensatory damages and $26 million in punitive damages, according to the Idaho Statesman.

“The jury’s decision imposes accountability for the ongoing campaign of intimidation, harassment and disinformation these defendants have conducted,” St. Luke’s said in a statement. “It also affirms the importance of protecting health care providers and other public servants from attacks intended to prevent them from carrying out their responsibilities.”