Washington (CNN) Two lawyers who went to court to claim voter fraud after the 2020 election must pay nearly $180,000 to the defendants they sued, a federal magistrate judge ordered Monday, saying their lawsuit aimed to "manipulate gullible members of the public and foment public unrest.".
The order from Magistrate Judge N. Reid Neureiter of the US District Court in Colorado adds to the federal judiciary's condemnations of attempts by attorneys supporting then-President Donald Trump to use the courts to vet right-wing conspiracies in the days after the presidential election.
"They need to take responsibility for their misconduct," Neureiter wrote in his order, adding that the lawsuit defamed the defendants.
He continued: "I believe that rather than a legitimate use of the legal system to seek redress for redressable grievances, this lawsuit has been used to manipulate gullible members of the public and foment public unrest.
To that extent, this lawsuit has been an abuse of the legal system and an interference with the machinery of government.
For all these reasons, I feel that a significant sanctions award is merited.". »