Defeated GOP candidate seeks arrest of blogger dominated in contempt of court docket

A former GOP Florida Home candidate suing blogger Jacob Engels, who has repeatedly missed hearings and deadlines within the case, is asking an Orange County choose to order Engels to clarify why he shouldn’t be arrested and introduced into court docket.

Former candidate Elizabeth Cornell, who misplaced within the Republican major for a Central Florida Home seat final 12 months, is suing Engels, a Proud Boys affiliate and writer of the web publication the Central Florida Submit, for libel.

The web site printed articles accusing Cornell of carrying on an extramarital affair and preying on an aged consumer in her monetary advising enterprise.

As a part of the swimsuit, Cornell and her lawyer, Ricardo Reyes, search to acquire a bevy of information and to subpoena almost two dozen people, together with a number of GOP elected officers and operatives.

Engels has repeatedly missed court docket hearings, together with one final month the place Orange County Circuit Choose James Craner granted a request from Reyes to carry Engels in contempt of court docket. Craner additionally agreed to concern a tremendous of $1,500 to Engels.

Now, Reyes is requesting the court docket to order Engels to clarify why he shouldn’t be arrested, saying he’s “purposefully partaking in a mockery of the judicial system” by not attending hearings and offering the paperwork the court docket has ordered him to show over. A listening to on the matter is scheduled for Aug. 21.

Engels’ lawyer resigned as his counsel in April. Engels stated in a textual content message to the Orlando Sentinel on Wednesday he can’t afford a substitute. He stated that, till lately, he had been left off the distribution record for court docket filings and the discover of the June listening to didn’t point out his attendance was required.

“I’m sure that Choose Craner will perceive these circumstances and permit me to be on equal footing now that I’ve been added to the distribution record,” Engels wrote.

Engels added that he has offered the information as required and that Reyes has requested him to “manufacture paperwork to satisfy opposing counsels narrative.”

“I can not give what I wouldn’t have,” Engels stated, including that “after they allege a conspiracy and wouldn’t have the proof, it’s improper and unlawful for me to satisfy these fantasies. They introduced the case they usually have the burden of proof.”

Reyes couldn’t be reached for remark this week.

Cornell was a candidate final 12 months for a Lake County Home seat that was finally gained by Republican Taylor Yarkosky of Montverde.

Cornell’s swimsuit cites two weblog posts printed by Engels final summer season, together with one the place he cited claims from a lawsuit filed by one among Cornell’s former purchasers, who stated Cornell, a monetary advisor, had given her poor steering.

That very same put up stated Cornell had excellent liens for work on her residence accomplished a number of years in the past and didn’t vote for Gov. Ron DeSantis or former President Donald Trump throughout earlier Republican primaries. One other put up accused Cornell of getting an affair with a married man.

The swimsuit described Engels’ posts as “clickbait” and stated they contained false or deceptive info. Cornell is just not looking for cash, however desires to clear her title and present that Engels’ weblog posts have been deceiving to voters, Reyes advised the Sentinel earlier this 12 months.

Along with Engels, Cornell’s swimsuit additionally lays blame on 4 unnamed political operatives she says “conspired with Engels to commit defamation.” Reyes stated earlier this 12 months they’re hoping to determine the roles of the unnamed operatives via the invention course of.

A number of the claims Engels printed have been repeated in mailers despatched by a committee operated by Stafford Jones, a Gainesville Republican marketing consultant. Jones advised the Sentinel earlier this 12 months he doesn’t know Engels and has by no means labored with him

Engels initially fought Cornell’s makes an attempt to subpoena Jones and others, however Reyes stated throughout a listening to in Could that Engels had agreed to drop his objections. Engels didn’t attend the listening to.