Mr. Stephen A. Jensen:
May I direct your attention to an article, which you wrote on the history of 145.435, dated October
9, 1998. In this article you stated " The repeater was always pretty friendly and that continued that
way until the onset of Richard Burton and friends when then began their compaign of harrasment of
Art Gentry and his repeater. This started in the late 70's I believe and continued for some years.
It only tapered off a bit after Richard went to jail for threats that he made on tha air as I recall."
The fact of the matter is that I was imprisoned for transmitting without a license. And not for
"threats that he [I] made on the air....." After consulting with my legal counsel, I have determined
that you have libeled me. You're article now appears on the 435 website(www.435.org) and has
been viewed by many.
I now make these demands.
1. I want a correction to your article and I want it published at this website.
2. I demand a public apology to be included with the correction.
Unless these demands are met, I've instructed my legal counsel to institute a legal proceedings and
law suit in the amount of $1,000,000.00 (One Million Dollars).
You have 10(ten) days in which to comply.
Richard Burton, firstname.lastname@example.org
Richard Burton Sent me this E-mail along with a threat that as the publisher of the 435 site, I to would be
Included in this legal action.
"Richard I'm sure John (N6JON) is not the attorney you consulted before taking this action, Was he? He was copied in this e-mail though. I'm sure he would have advised you that you have no case here and you would be stupid to even try. ( I apologies to any stupid people that might be offended by any comparisons to Richard Burton). Richard please read below, the law as it applies to libel. You will be suprised. I was, I think you may find that you are more often that not on the wrong side of this law"
Definition of libel in California:
"A libel is a defamation expressed in written or other graphic form that tends to blacken the
memory of the dead or that tends to injure a living person's reputation and thereby expose the
person to public hatred, contempt or ridicule, or financial injury or to impeach any person's
honesty, integrity, virtue, or reputation." (California Statues, Sec. 73.001, 1995)
There are 3 categories of libel:
a.A statement that is defamatory on its face.
i.A statement that is obviously defamatory. A statement that is written to harm
another person and the malice can be seen by anyone who reads that statement.
ii.Persons with necessary contextual knowledge appreciate the statement as
iii.While not defamatory on the face, the statement is defamatory when viewed
together with extrinsic circumstances.
Statements must be facts, not ideas:
In each of these cases, the statements must be published as facts, not opinions or ideas. For
example, writing, "I think that [someone] is accepting bribes." is not libel because it is published
as an idea of the publisher. On the other hand, if the publisher writes, "[Someone] is accepting
bribes." and the statement is proved to be false, then the publisher can be considered guilty of
However, the "I think" or "I believe" clause is not always a valid exemption from libel law, if the
implication is that the author is indeed attempting to convey factual information. Eric S.
"The issue of whether an allegedly defamatory statement is one of opinion or fact
is one of the more difficult and common questions in a defamation suit. Courts
have held that merely prefacing an otherwise defamatory statement with the words
"I believe..." is not enough to eliminate the implication that the statement was
intended to communicate facts."
Plaintiff must prove malice:
The plaintiff must prove that some form of damage occurred from the published statement.
The damage may have been tangible losses, such as the loss of a job, financial loss, or the
damage may have been intangible such as the loss of reputation and respect in a community.