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JOEY 'RYAN' MEEHAN FILES TWO ADDITIONAL DEFAMATION LAWSUITS, SEEKS COURT DECLARATION THAT ALLEGATIONS AGAINST HIM ARE FALSE

By Mike Johnson on 2020-10-09 20:20:00

Joseph R. Meehan, known professionally in the world of pro wrestling as Joey Ryan, has filed two more lawsuits over the last week, bringing the total number of suits filed, as of this writing, to five.

On 10/7, Meehan filed a lawsuit before the United States District Court, Central District of California against a woman in Texas (who PWInsider.com will refer to as Texas in our reporting), citing libel, emotional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of emotional distress and false light allegations, among other charges.  The lawsuit features much of the same background information laying out Meehan’s career, the financial losses he has endured in the wake of the allegations made against him online, etc.

The 33-page Texas lawsuit specifically references her making alleged defamatory statements against Meehan, citing that she wrote on Twitter that Texas, citing another woman’s claims, “implied she had the same type of experience” with Meehan, defaming him by presenting the story that she had been assaulted, even when the other woman did not allege that there had been any physical, sexual assault in her own experience with Meehan.

Meehan wrote, “[Texas] Defamatory Statement is, and was, false, including that Plaintiff did not assault [name deleted] in any way shape or form, sexual or otherwise. Any intimate acts between Plaintiff and [name deleted] were made with [deleted]’s clear consent and was bragged about by [deleted] to other persons.  Plaintiff and [deleted] were involved in a sexual encounter with another woman and was unequivocally made with the consent of all person’s involved.”

The lawsuit against Texas cited, “Defendant used at least Twitter, including on and in each of her own Twitter subscriptions, accounts, identities, and handles, to write, and thereby publish, the defamatory statements described above and incorporated by reference herein, which included, that (1) Plaintiff assaulted defendant; (2) Plaintiff committed a sexual battery on defendant; (3) Plaintiff committed (1) and (2) in a manner that would be considered a felony;(4) defendant engaged in sexual acts with Plaintiff without Defendant’s consent; and/or (5) defendant was forced by Plaintiff to engage in sexual acts with Plaintiff, forced meaning the use of fear, threat and intimidation.”

In the Texas lawsuit, Meehan is asking the court for $200,000 per month in economic damages from 6/21/20 on, to be awarded $5 million in non-economic damages, that the court order issue a permanent restraining order preventing Texas from "making and publishing the defamatory statements", order Texas to direct any websites that posted "the defamatory statements" to delete and remove them, to have Meehan's legal and investigatory fees reimbursed and to "Award punitive and exemplary damages against defendant and in favor of Plaintiff in the sum of $10,000,000.00 by reason of defendant’s malice, hatred, ill-will, despicable and intentional acts”  as well as any other measures the court deems fair.

On 9/30, Meehan also filed a lawsuit before the Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Los Angeles - Central Judicial District against a California woman (who, although she has not alleged she was abused at the hands of Meehan, has identified herself as a sexual abuse survivor, so PWInsider.com will refer to her as Los Angeles in our reporting), alleging that since she is a freelance writer, her tweets about Meehan are especially defamatory “because of the presumption and duty that writers who write about newsworthy stories have verified sources and conducted investigative diligence, before making factual statements; uses her self-proclaimed “freelance writer” stamp to boost credibility to the factual statements that Defendant publishes in the stories Defendant has written or posted on media outlets, because of the presumption and duty that writers who write about newsworthy stories have verified sources and conducted investigative diligence, before making factual statements.”

Meehan’s lawsuit against Los Angeles, while featuring much of the same background information about his career, is different in that he is specifically not just pursuing damages against her but also asking the court to declare that allegations made about him by Los Angeles are false:

 Plaintiff prays that this this court declare as false statements that 1) Plaintiff assaulted women; (2) Plaintiff committed a sexual battery on women; (3) Plaintiff committed (1) and (2) in a manner that would be considered a felony;(4) women engaged in sexual acts with Plaintiff without the consent of those women; and/or (5) women were forced by Plaintiff to engage in sexual acts with Plaintiff, forced meaning the use of fear, threat and intimidation, including Defendant’s false statement that Plaintiff had, and used, business power in professional wrestling.

Meehan claims thar Los Angeles made six different defamatory statements against him via Twitter posts, writing and podcast appearances.  He alleges she requested those reading her Twitter posts to not support videos from Meehan's Bar Wrestling promotion because Meehan could make advertising money from them "since he lost all his jobs because he is a sexual predator."  Stating that the claim he is a sexual predator is false, Meehan alleged that Los Angeles published her statement with the "intention of instigating others to assist" in eliminating "any, and all, income stream" that Meehan made from his pro wrestling exploits as well as to prevent Meehan from "securing employment positions, contracts, and relationships" relating to professional wrestling that could allow him to earn income.  Meehan alleges that others, including "professional wrestling promotors" (sic) responded to Los Angeles and agreed to prevent Meehan from making income.

Meehan also alleges that Los Angeles referred to him as the “Harvey Weinstein of wrestling on a podcast”, comparing him to the now-jailed former Hollywood heavyweight who was found guilty in the wake of the #MeToo Movement bringing his crimes to the public light.  Meehan alleged that Los Angeles also "expressed her intent in using unsubstantiated stories about the Defendant based on rumor to sell the stories and rumors to media outlets for her own personal financial profit."  Meehan also alleges that Los Angeles again used the Harvey Weinstein comparison in an article while writing about New Japan Pro Wrestling not addressing allegations against talents they employ that came out during the #SpeakingOut Movement, while writing in that piece that she could not get anyone “to go on the record with a first-hand account” about Meehan.

Meehan alleged that anyone could see her defamatory statements and up until the filing of the lawsuit, that Los Angeles did not issue a statement detracting the false statements, knew her statements were not true before she published them and "acted in a reckless disregard for the truth in the defamatory statements by not conducting any diligence, inquiry and investigation as to whether or not the defamatory statements were true or false.”

Meehan’s lawsuit stated:

“Defendant’s defamatory statements are, and was, false, including that Plaintiff did not assault any person in any way shape or form, sexual or otherwise. Plaintiff is not a sexual predator and never committed any crimes as implied by Defendant in her defamatory statements. Any intimate acts between Plaintiff and another person were made with that other person’s clear consent. Plaintiff is not, and has never been in a position of power in professional wrestling and has never used any power to take advantage of women. Plaintiff has never been known to be the “Harvey Weinstein” of wrestling and if so has only been made out as such by Defendant’s conduct, including spreading false statements referenced herein.”

Meehan also alleged that he reached out to Los Angeles asking her to stop but she instead continued to defame him:

Defendant’s defamatory statements were not privileged and Plaintiff did not consent to the publication of the defamatory statements. Plaintiff, in fact, implored defendant to stop the publication of the defamatory statements. Defendant responded by repeating more statements that (1) Plaintiff assaulted women; (2) Plaintiff committed sexual battery on women; (3) Plaintiff committed (1) and (2) in a manner that would be considered a felony;(4) women engaged in sexual acts with Plaintiff without the consent of those women; and/or (5) women were forced by Plaintiff to engage in sexual acts with Plaintiff, forced meaning the use of fear, threat and intimidation, including Defendant’s false statement that Plaintiff had, and used, business power in professional wrestling.

In the lawsuit against Los Angeles, Meehan is claiming loss of income, that he was shunned locally in California as a result of Los Angeles’ statements that the statements "tended to injure" Meehan as a professional wrestler and promoter,injure him otherwise beyond his status as a wrestler/promoter and that her statements s exposed Plaintiff to hatred, contempt, ridicule, and shame by (1) persons residing in California; (2) persons involved and interested in professional wrestling and wrestling promotions; and (4) those persons using the world-wide-web interested in Plaintiff, professional wrestling and wrestling promotions.  The defamatory statements discouraged others from associating or dealing with Plaintiff. ”  

Meehan also alleges Los Angeles' statements “destroyed his reputation” and that “Defendant’s statements were a call to action for all persons to prevent plaintiff from earning any income through his Youtube channel and his promotion Bar Wrestling. Defendant did so by spreading rumors that were false and publishing defamatory statements of fact.”

The lawsuit against Los Angeles is also filed against 10 additional Jane Does, giving Meehan the ability to add others he feels have also damaged him to the lawsuit as it progresses.

In the lawsuit against Los Angeles, Meehan is asking the court to award him economic damages in an amount "according to proof at trial" in excess of $25,000 per allegation, be awarded non-economic damages, issue an injunction permanently restraining and enjoining Los Angeles from "making and publishing" her previous statements as well as any future iteration of the defamatory statements, order her to retract the statements, order all websites that published her comments to remove them, award him actual damages, reimburse his costs, expenses and investigatory fees to the fullest extent of the law as well as award punitive and exemplary damages " reason of defendant’s malice, hatred, ill-will, despicable and intentional acts.  "

In each lawsuit, Meehan is seeking a jury trial.

As previously noted, these lawsuits follow three previous civil suits that have been filed in recent weeks.

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