Kennedy Agyapong discontinues his defamation case against Kevin Taylor

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Assin Central Member of Parliament, Kennedy Agyapong has discontinued his $9.5m defamation suit against Kevin Taylor, a US-based Ghanaian journalist.

In documents shared by With All Due Respect (@cdzas) on Twitter, it showed that the MP, writing through his lawyers to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division, stated his disinterest in pursuing the case any longer.

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Kennedy Agyapong and Kevin Taylor
Kennedy Agyapong and Kevin Taylor

“Please take notice that, plaintiff, Mr. Kennedy Ohene Agyapong (“Plaintiff”), by and through his undersigned counsel, pursuant to Rules 41(a)(1)(A)(i) and 41(a)(1)(B) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, hereby voluntarily dismisses Defendants, Mr. Kevin Taylor and Loud Silence Media LLC (collectively, “Defendants”), in this action without prejudice.

“At the time of filing of this Notice of Voluntary Dismissal Without Prejudice, Defendants in this action have not filed, or otherwise served, an answer or motion for summary judgement. Plaintiff has not previously dismissed any federal – or state-court action based on or including the same claim,” the document dated May 20, 2022, said.

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In March 2022, GhanaWeb reported that a defamation suit by the Member of Parliament for Assin Central against US-based Ghanaian journalist Kevin Taylor, and his media company, Loud Silence Media, had been dismissed by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.

By the court, Kennedy Agyapong had failed to truly prove that the comments made by Mr Taylor were defamatory; hence the case was thrown out, citinewsroom.com said in a report.

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The Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyapong, had filed a fifteen-page suit against Kevin Taylor and Loud Silence Media over what he described as a series of “false and defamatory statements in a series of videos and an email correspondence published by Defendants via Facebook, YouTube, and other social media platforms about Plaintiff.”

In his suit, Kennedy Agyapong was seeking seven reliefs from the Virginia court, including an injunction prohibiting Kevin Taylor and his organization from posting on any media outlet any further defamatory remarks and an apology from the latter.

But the presiding judge, Honourable Liam O’Grady, in his ruling, suggested that Mr. Agyapong had no basis for demanding US$9.5 million in damages.

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He has, however, been given a 60-day window to appeal the judgment if he wishes.

“It is undisputed that Agyapong is a public figure and Taylor’s statements were made regarding matters of public concern. The Amended Complaint does not plead any factual material that demonstrates Taylor’s disputed statements were published with actual malice.

“Therefore, Agyapong has not adequately plead an actionable claim. Further, the Amended Complaint does not plausibly state a claim under the Virginia Computer Crimes Act. For these reasons, the Motion to Dismiss the Amended Complaint (Dkt. 13) is GRANTED and the above captioned civil action is DISMISSED. The Plaintiff has 60 days to file a Second Amended Complaint if that filing would meet the requirements discussed in this Order,” the suit said.

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