Relatives of nightclub victims sue social media companies
The families of three men killed inside an Orlando nightclub by an Islamic State-inspired gunman accused the world’s largest social media companies in federal court this week of providing material support to the terrorist group.
Filed Monday in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, the 51-page complaint accuses Facebook, Twitter and Google of giving Islamic State platforms to “spread extremist propaganda, raise funds and attract new recruits.”
The lawsuit says those platforms caused Omar Mateen to open fire inside the Pulse nightclub on June 12, killing 49 people.
“Without Defendants Twitter, Facebook and Google (YouTube), the explosive growth of ISIS over the last few years into the most feared terrorist group in the world would not have been possible,” the lawsuit states.
Federal investigators say Mateen, 29, pledged allegiance to Islamic State while carrying out the deadliest mass shooting in recent U.S. history.
The FBI has not found any direct connections between the gunman and international terrorism. But the families of Mateen’s victims say the social media companies should be held responsible for providing Islamic State with moneymaking platforms to amplify its agenda.