A Warsaw-based court resolved that Joachim Brudziński, Chief of the Law and Justice’s electoral campaign, is to apologise the Open Dialogue Foundation and its leaders i.e. Lyudmyla Kozlovska and Bartosz Kramek, for the violation of their personal rights. The judgment is not yet final.
Pursuant to the judgment issued by the District Court in Warsaw on 26 July 2023, the Law and Justice’s Vice Chairman and Chief of the party’s electoral campaign, Joachim Brudziński MEP, was obliged to apologise and pay damages in favour of the Open Dialogue Foundation, Lyudmyla Kozlovska and Bartosz Kramek. The court found that there occurred an indisputable, serious violation of our personal rights, emphasizing the explicitly defamatory context of the phrases used against us, and their abusive nature.
Under the court’s decision, Joachim Brudziński is to publish his statement of apology on Twitter, where it is to remain “pinned up” on the top of page for 60 days. Moreover, the MEP is to pay damages of PLN 30,000, plus statutory interest and court fees. The judgment is not yet final.
In April 2019, Joachim Brudzinski, the then head of the Ministry of Interior and Administration, in his rambling tweet post accused the Foundation and its leaders of being engaged in money laundering and suggested we had some unspecified ties to Russia. Mr Brudziński tweeted: “Hi, defenders of the ‘Euro-Kazakh’ crooks famous for ‘shutting down the government’. Do you know you are useful idiots? Do you realise that December’s ‘miraculous resurrection’ of Mr. D. and the Rossmann candles were funded with laundered money? I don’t think that Lusia and her tolerant husband are likely to get the Nobel Prize”. He published his statement in reference to a 2018 report by an investigative commission of the then Moldovan parliament.
We filed a lawsuit against Brudzinski at court in October 2019.
During the trial, Mr Brudzinski’s attorneys attempted to defend their principal, pointing to the “vague” nature of his tweet and the allegedly unspecified targets of the Minister’s slander. Adrian Salus, Defence Attorney, (also known as an acting attorney for Law and Justice’s Chairman, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, and an on-call member of supervisory boards of state-owned companies) also cited some statements by Bartosz Kramek, in which he allegedly offended the leader of the ruling party and members of the government, and, acting jointly with Marcin Mycielski, offended the religious beliefs of Poles by using the image of “Rainbow Virgin Mary”. Atty. Salus also recalled Mr Kramek’s allegedly “outrageous” 2017 article on civil disobedience in defence of judicial independence, in which “Plaintiff called for breaking the law,” and his alleged insults to the Defendant in other publications. However, the court did not follow this line of argument.
Judge Marcin Polit stressed that Brudzinski’s tweet unambiguously violated the personal rights of both the Foundation and its members. In addition, the judge deemed the Twitter entry in question as “clearly defamatory”, stressing, in particular, the unauthorized and very grave allegation of money laundering by the Foundation.
The Defendant himself, as the court noted: “has consistently stuck to his decision not to appear at the hearings.”
- Polish state broadcaster TVP forced to apologise and pay damages following court verdict (July 4, 2023)
- Marcin Rey’s apology. Court settlement concludes the dispute (March 11, 2023)
- ODF wins court case against Dominik Tarczyński MEP (August 15, 2022)
- Maciej Wąsik loses libel case over Foundation’s ‘ties to Russia’ claim. Court ordered apologies (August 5, 2022)
- TVP complies with court order in ODF case (February 2, 2021)
- Polish Radio executes interim measure re. ODF (May 6, 2020)
- 20 lawsuits filed against Law and Justice. Interim measure against TVP (October 11, 2019)
- “Gazeta Polska” and Tomasz Sakiewicz lose in court to the Open Dialogue Foundation (April 25, 2019)
In the media:
- Crowd Media: This is bad news for Mr Brudziński. The Famous ‘YOYO’ has lost a court case and now he has to apologise. The trigger for the dispute was his tweet (July 28, 2023)
- Rzeczpospolita: Joachim Brudzinski lost a court case. He is to apologise and pay PLN 30 thousand in damages (July 28, 2023)
- O2: Brudziński is to apologise for the “crooks”. On top of that, he will also pay a hefty sum (July 28, 2023)
- Press: Mr Brudziński is to apologise and pay for his tweet on the “Euro-Kazakh crooks” (July 28, 2023)
- naTemat: The Case Lost by Brudziński. The Law and Justice (PiS) Chief of Staff Must Apologise (July 27, 2023)
- Gazeta.pl: Court’s Ruling in the Case of Joachim Brudziński and His Attack on the Open Dialogue Foundation (July 27, 2023)
- Onet: Joachim Brudziński Lost in Court and Must Apologise (July 27, 2023)
- Gazeta Wyborcza: Brudziński must apologise. The Open Dialogue Foundation has won in court again (July 26, 2023)