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Local News in Brief : JDL Chief Wins Suit Against Nazi Leader

A judge Friday ordered the director of the American Nazi Party to pay $100,000 in damages to Jewish Defense League Chairman Irv Rubin for alleging during a public standoff last year that Rubin had AIDS.

Superior Court Judge Joseph Kalin ordered Stanley Witek to pay $10,000 in direct damages and $90,000 in punitive damages to Rubin, who sued Witek for libel stemming from the Nov. 22, 1987, incident.

The incident occurred in a hallway at the Glendale Holiday Inn where self-described racist J. B. Stoner was appearing.

In front of news reporters and television camera crews who recorded the incident, Witek pointed at Rubin and said: “He has AIDS. See, you can see the AIDS sores on his face,” according to Jan Tucker, an investigator for the JDL.

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The judge’s ruling was based on the perception of AIDS as a “horrible” stigmatizing disease and Rubin’s recognition as a public figure, Tucker said. Rubin filed the libel suit against Witek last July. The judge’s ruling Friday came in a default hearing after Witek failed to file the necessary paper work with the court.


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