May 6, 2016
Nazerali v Mitchell 2016 BCSC 810
Affleck, J. awarded the plaintiff, $400,000 in general damages, $500,000 in aggravated damages, $250,000 in punitive damages and $55,000 in special damages for web publications falsely portraying the plaintiff as a gangster, arms dealer and drug trafficker with links to Al Qaeda and relationships with the Russian and Italian Mafias.
The judgement stated:
Mitchell, Byrne and Deep Capture LLC engaged in a calculated and ruthless campaign to inflict as much damage on Mr. Nazerali’s reputation as they could achieve.
…their intention was to conduct a vendetta in which the truth about Mr. Nazerali himself was of no consequence.
Not only are the defamatory words pleaded by the plaintiff damaging to his reputation, these defendants, instead of choosing to tone down their extravagant language once they were sued, chose to pile on the abuse with a narrative of multiple allegations of serious misconduct…
The judge held that Mitchell and Byrne demonstrated “an indecent and pitiless desire to wound”. The court also issued a permanent injunction.