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I am sorry to hear what is happening to your friend's son. In this day and age, it is easier to reach a much larger audience with the internet and individuals can be harmed in a much larger way. It is fortunate that your friend's son knows who these individuals are because there are many who are victims of the same actions, but cannot find get redress because they do not know the identity of the perpetrators.
Defamation is a tort and is governed by tort law. False statements that are written are called 'libel" while false statements that are spoken are called "slander". Libel, slander, and other forms of maligning an individual fall under the broad "umbrella" of defamation. In order to prevail in an action for libel, slander, and defamation in general, the Plaintiff must prove the four (4) elements which are the same for each:
1. The false statement is "uttered" or "written"
2. The Defendant knew that the statement was false, or was made in "reckless disregard for the truth;
3. The Defendant "published" them to a third party - "Made known" to others
4. The Plaintiff suffered damages to his or her name and reputation in the community.
In defamation lawsuits, the Plaintiff will seek damages as well as an Injunction so that the Defendant(s) are prohibited from continuing to defame the Plaintiff,
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