Professor Sues NY Times for Libel Over 2015 GMO Story

The New York Times isn’t just accused of political bias, it’s science bias too. The paper is being sued for libel by a university professor after an article about academics and food lobbies, according to The Gainesville Sun.

University of Florida professor Dr. Kevin Folta sued the Times and reporter Eric Lipton for a 2015 story “he says unfairly portrayed him as a ‘covertly paid operative’ for Monsanto, a company that produces genetically modified crops,” The Sun reported on Oct. 13.

Folta is UF’s horticultural sciences chairman and a photobiology and strawberry genomics scientist who supports GMOs.

His lawsuit complained the Times wrongly portrayed his connections to Monsanto and public support for GMOs and caused damages including death threats and cancelled speaking engagements.

“The damage is so catastrophic that it serves to silence the other honest scientists for fear of the same fate,” the lawsuit stated. Folta is seeking more than $75,000 in damages over the article he says was a “‘kiss of death’ to a public scientist’s reputation.”

The Sun noted the case was transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida but no trial date had been set.

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