Alex Jones of InfoWars talks to reporters outside a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing concerning … [+]
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Topline: Alex Jones was threatened with legal action over his promotion of fake coronavirus treatments on Thursday as public health officials work to tamp down the spread of potentially dangerous Covid-19 misinformation.
- New York Attorney General Letitia James ordered Jones to immediately stop marketing toothpaste, dietary supplements, creams and other products as treatments for the coronavirus.
- James said she “won’t hesitate to take legal action and hold him accountable for the harm he’s caused” if the order isn’t followed.
- On his radio show Tuesday, Jones said silver-infused toothpaste, which is sold on his website for $9.95 a bottle, “kills the whole SARS-corona family at point-blank range,” the Huffington Post reported.
- The FDA has said there is no evidence that “colloidal silver ingredients or silver salts” can cure diseases.
- There is currently no Covid-19 vaccine, though there are several efforts underway to develop one.
Crucial quote: “Mr. Jones’ public platform has given him a microphone to shout inflammatory rhetoric, but these latest mistruths are incredibly dangerous and pose a serious threat to the public health of our nation,” James tweeted. “There is NO FDA-approved vaccine or treatment to prevent or cure.”
News peg: Several companies have already been warned by the federal government against selling fake coronavirus cures based on conspiracy theories. Facebook and Twitter, too, have taken steps to ban or limit coronavirus misinformation and ads on their platforms.
Key background: Jones, the publisher of InfoWars, is a prominent far-right conspiracy theorist who has been accused of making false statements before. He is currently facing a defamation lawsuit for saying the Sandy Hook shooting was a hoax and the victims’ parents are deep state “crisis actors.” He was also involved in spreading the Pizzagate conspiracy theory.