Earlier this week, a D.C. federal judge dismissed a counterclaim filed by former Donald Trump campaign lawyer Sidney Powell against Dominion Voting Systems.

Dominion, the voting tech company, is now suing Powell in a $1.3 billion defamation complaint over her false claims about its equipment following Trump’s 2020 election loss to Joe Biden. On Wednesday, however, District Court Judge Carl Nichols ruled that Dominion had not abused the legal process to “to punish and make an example” out of her as she had previously claimed.

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Nichols wrote in his ruling:

“Powell must allege that Dominion, after filing its suit, performed some act that perverted the judicial process. But Powell’s complaint fails to link her abuse-of-process claim to any act that Dominion has taken other than filing and pursuing its lawsuit. She has thus failed to state a claim for abuse of process.”

Flickr / Gage Skidmore / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Powell complained that Dominion sent a letter and a copy of its complaint to another individual demanding they retract defamatory statements, and is therefore alleging that the company has publicly threatened to file similar lawsuits as retaliation. Nichols said that both actions were standard legal practice and dismissed Powell’s counterclaim:

“Powell claims that both acts support a finding that Dominion is using its lawsuit to suppress public criticism. But neither of these acts is improper, and both fall ‘far short of the usual case of abuse of process where there is an attempt at extortion in a manner collateral to the litigation.'”

Voting via Flickr / Tim Evanson https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Dominion’s original suit came after Powell and other pro-Trump attorneys and allies allegedly made defamatory statements about the voting machine company as they helped lead Trump’s president’s failed attempts to overturn the outcome of the 2020 presidential election, which he lost by nearly 8 million votes to current President Joe Biden.

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Christopher Powell