On Wednesday, Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric Davis, who is overseeing the $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit brought by Dominion Voting Systems against Fox News, said if Dominion seeks the testimony of Fox Corp CEO Rupert Murdoch and other Fox executives, he would not quash the subpoenas but compel them to testify, CNBC reported.
On Tuesday, Fox filed a letter with the court listing the 11 people it would make available to testify in the trial, including on-air personalities Maria Bartiromo, Tucker Carlson, and Sean Hannity.
Other personalities included among the 11 people Fox will make available are former host Lou Dobbs and Judge Jeanine Pirro. Additionally, Fox said hosts Bret Baier and Dana Perino would be available to testify for either the defense or the plaintiff.
But Fox Corp CEO Rupert Murdoch, as well as his son, Fox News CEO Lachlan Murdoch were not included on Fox’s list.
On Wednesday, Dominion filed a letter with the court urging Judge Davis to compel the Murdochs, along with Fox board member Paul Ryan and Fox’s chief legal and policy officer Viet Dinh, to testify in person.
During Wednesday’s hearing, the judge said both Fox News and Dominion have made the Murdochs, Ryan, and Viet Dinh “very relevant.” He said if Dominion decides to subpoena them at trial, he would do nothing to quash the subpoenas but instead, will “compel them to come.”
Judge Davis also ruled that the jury cannot hear anything about the January 6 riot at the Capitol, saying he didn’t believe the events of the day are relevant to the case. He said all but one of the on-air statements relevant to Dominion’s lawsuit were made before January 6, 2021.
Dominion is suing Fox News claiming the network and its on-air personalities acted with malice when broadcasting lies about its voting systems after the 2020 presidential election.
The jury trial is scheduled to begin on April 17 and is expected to last around four weeks.