Some of us have simply accepted that much of the Internet is a toxic cesspool so crowded with virulent gossip-mongers that it makes Junior High look like a Rainbow Family gathering. But not Leo Kehoe—the Queens accountant is not about to turn the other cheek when some anonymous troll flames him on the World Wide Web; no, Leo's going to try to cash in. He's suing Craigslist because one critic, who claimed to be a dissatisfied customer, wrote the following on March 5th:
CPA FRAUD ALERT! (BEWARE OF CROOK) Watch out for this fraudulent scumbag! ... He will botch up your tax returns and forget to submit them. He has been associated with TAX EVATION and falsifying records . . . Warn everyone you know!
The postings have since been removed; in their place are glowing reviews like "Leo Kehoe is a great CPA. He charged me a lower fee than what I had payed with someone else and he did a much better job" and "Leo Kehoe: Much better than Cats. I'm going to see him again and again." But now, of course, the press generated by Kehoe's lawsuit has amplified this troll's trash-talk far and wide, guaranteeing that Google searches will preserve it for the ages.
But that might be a small price to pay if the lawsuit isn't laughed out of court, and Kehoe gets the damages he's seeking: $1 million for each of the two counts against Craigslist and each of the two counts against whoever posted the ads, for a total of $4 million, the Post reports. (And should that work, we're going to be anonymously posting some very nasty comments about ourselves on Craigslist.)
Kehoe's lawyer tells the Daily News Craigslist "should have known the posting was false and untrue" and would expose Kehoe to "ridicule, disgrace and prejudice." He says his client has "suffered great pain and anguish and has been irreparably injured in his good names." According to state records, he's had no disciplinary action against him.