Wissam Al Mana, a Qatari billionaire and the ex-husband of Janet Jackson, recently filed a defamation suit against Facebook in a Dublin court. According to a report appearing in The Times, the billionaire accuses Facebook of allowing dubious crypto projects to use his image on ads appearing on the platform. 

The Lawsuit

The lawsuit was filed in Dublin, the capital of Ireland and the headquarters of Facebook’s European operations. In the lawsuit, he alleges that Facebook allowed scammers to use his images without his consent to promote crypto projects. These ads were targeted at potential investors in the Middle East. Al Mana is a famous businessman in the Middle East. He is a household name in the region, which might be why scammers targeted his image.

What His Lawyer Had to Say

The billionaire is being represented by Ronan Daly Jermyn law firm and his case is being handled by Lawyer Paul Tweed. In the past, Tweed has represented high-profile clients including Ismail Omar Guelleh, the President of Djibouti. He also represented Ghanem Nuseibeh, a critic of Qatar in similar lawsuits against the social media giant. Additionally, he has represented top celebrities such as Harrison Ford, Jessica Biel, Nicolas Cage, and Justin Timberlake I defamation lawsuits that were filed in the Irish judicial system.

Why the Case Was Filed In Ireland

Tweed said that the decision to file the case in Ireland was a strategic one. First, that was where Facebook’s European headquarters is located. Secondly, European laws were more favorable to such lawsuits. This was because, in the US, various companies and individuals could use first amendment laws to claim that their actions were protected under free speech. As a result, they are often able to escape any responsibilities in protecting the reputations of their users.

About Al Mana

Al Mana is one of the most famous businessmen in the Middle East. Through wise business maneuvering, he has managed to acquire exclusive rights to well-known brands such as Alexander McQueen, Hermes, Balenciaga, and Harvey Nichols, in the Middle East region. He is estimated to be worth over a billion euros.

Shady Projects Using Facebook Ads

In the past, Facebook had announced a total ban on crypto-related advertising. However, once it announced that it was launching the Facebook Libra project, it decided to relax some of the rules regarding crypto advertising. While there are strict rules governing crypto advertising on Facebook, committed scammers always find a way to get through. This includes using the images of famous people to get people to click on ads. These ads are usually styled to make it seem like the famous person is endorsing the project. Some of the famous people that have had their images used for these ICO scams include Floyd Mayweather, the boxer, and DJ Khaled, an artist. Both of these celebrities’ images were used in the Centra Tech scam, which led to the founders being sued by the SEC. The SEC had also sued both of the celebrities but it later dropped the lawsuit after it emerged their images were used without their authorization.

Image Source: Pixabay

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