A former reporter for The Young Turks Network filed a $23.5 million lawsuit against HuffPost on Wednesday, alleging that he was fired after the site published a libelous post accusing him of rape.
Jordan Chariton was an investigative reporter for the progressive YouTube channel until he was let go last month. The firing followed the publication of an unpaid contributor post accusing him of sexually assaulting a co-worker, Carly Hammond.
HuffPost removed the article within 24 hours. According to its author, Christian Chiakulas, the post was taken down because HuffPost was unable to devote the resources to fact-check a contributor post of that nature.
Oath, the parent company of HuffPost, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In the suit, Chariton says the sexual assault allegations were fabricated by bitter co-workers in order to destroy his career. He also faults HuffPost for indexing the article on Google News, which boosted its visibility.
The post alleged that Chariton sexually assaulted Hammond at a hotel in May 2017. Hammond was working as a reporter for Truth Against the Machine, a side project co-founded by Chariton. Chariton contends that the author failed to interview witnesses who would have confirmed that the alleged assault never occurred.
Shortly after the post was published, TYT Network terminated Chariton. Cenk Uygur, the CEO of the network, announced on “The Young Turks” that Chariton was fired for using company resources to launch Truth Against the Machine, and for admitting to having a sexual relationship with a subordinate.