The Minnesota MAGA enthusiast filed a federal lawsuit on Thursday alleging that voting technology companies Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic engaged in a racketeering conspiracy “to suppress free speech and extort silence from dissenters.”
Dominion sued Lindell’s company, MyPillow Inc, for defamation and demanded $1.6 billion after Lindell leveled a series of false allegations about the company’s voting software in the wake of the 2020 election. Defamation suits by Smartmatic and Dominion, Lindell claims, amount to a racketeering conspiracy to suppress the wild accusations about the companies’ products.
The suit frequently cites cease-and-desist letters sent by Dominion attorneys at the law firm Clare Locke which demanded that recipients refrain from and retract false accusations about the company’s products, but it does not name attorneys from the firm as defendants.
“I told my lawyers that I wanted to go after Dominion and Smartmatic's lawyers, but my attorneys told me it was better to name them as co-conspirators in the lawsuit, but not to sue them directly,” Lindell told The Daily Beast on Thursday. “There are so many frivolous lawsuits and greedy lawyers out there. They've ruined so many lives and businesses. I get so upset with lawyers sometimes."
By invoking the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, or RICO, passed as part of the Organized Crime Control Act in 1970, Lindell appears to be likening the voting machine companies to a sprawling organized crime syndicate. The law contains a criminal offense used by prosecutors to take down organized crime groups, but also contains a provision that allows plaintiffs to sue entities allegedly engaged in the same criminal conduct.
Lindell also alleged that the two companies are guilty of defamation, abuse of process, and depriving Lindell of his civil rights under color of state law.
The lawsuit is littered with ominous-sounding quotes from sci-fi dystopian fiction like the Terminator franchise—one section of the 80-page suit is dubbed “Rise of the Machines”—1984, Shakespeare, and Fahrenheit 451.
But despite the rhetorical flourishes, the suit mostly reiterates the same allegations Lindell presented in an April lawsuit, namely that by suing MyPillow and sending cease-and-desist letters, Dominion and its lawyers have deprived Lindell of his free speech rights and harmed his business.