Former Vice President Al Gore is being sued by Al Jazeera America, the Associated Press reported Friday. The lawsuit comes just one month after Gore sued the news network, saying it was withholding tens of millions of dollars it owed after purchasing Current TV from him and other shareholders in 2013.
Thus, it seems an exchange of lawsuits has begun over the controversial sale of Current TV.
Former US Vice President Al Gore speaks about climate change during the Fourth Annual Rhode Island Energy and Environmental Leaders Day at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, June 11, 2013. SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images
Via the Associated Press:
The parties are fighting over money that is being held in escrow. The former vice president and [Joel Hyatt], the founder of Hyatt Legal Services, sued the network last month saying that it was improperly withholding tens of millions of dollars placed in escrow when Al Jazeera bought Current TV for $500 million.
Al Jazeera America says it is entitled to the money because Gore and Hyatt agreed to indemnify the network for claims made against Current TV, but didn't live up to their promise. It accuses the pair of "misrepresentations" and says they received hundreds of millions of dollars from the sale.
Gore and Hyatt filed a lawsuit against the network in the Delaware Court of Chancery. The two men each owned 20 percent of Current TV.
Qatari-owned Al Jazeera America described itself as the “envy of the industry" back in January, but instigated a wave of layoffs in April after hiring more than 800 people and failing to garner a competitive audience. Controversial articles like one written in September, suggesting the beheading of American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff were "Hollywood" fakes likely haven't helped their credibility among the American public, though the network did retract the article.
Time Warner Cable began carrying Al Jazeera America in October of 2013, boosting the network’s availability to about 55 million homes, up from 44 million. In January of 2014, Time Warner Cable gave the network a big boost by moving it from channel 181 — where it was neighbored by Univision Deportes and Shop Zeal — to channel 57, next to CNN’s sister network HLN.
Time Warner Cable has so far remained non-committal on whether it has any plans to carry Glenn Beck’s network TheBlaze TV, often described by Beck as an alternative to Al Jazeera America.
“We’ve had discussions regarding carriage of [TheBlaze], but we don’t have an agreement,” Time Warner representative Maureen Huff has said.