We’re writing to you today because The Intercept is currently engaged in multiple legal fights to allow our journalists to uncover the truth, and our costs have piled up.
Billionaire Erik Prince sued The Intercept over an article we published — and that we stand by — about efforts to sell military services to a sanctioned Russian entity. Our legal defense in that case alone has cost $200,000.
Meanwhile, The Intercept’s investigation into the brutal crackdown on Dakota Access pipeline protestors led to us filing a lawsuit under state open records laws to gain access to thousands of pages of documents currently being kept from the public. That case has cost another $100,000 and counting.
Our reporters have never shied away from a fight when truth and the public’s right to know are at stake, and our legal team is no different. But with these battles drawing significant resources, we’re asking you, our readers, to chip in whatever you can afford today.
When journalists start digging into possible wrongdoing by corporations or government officials, there’s often a backlash.
Sometimes they try to stonewall us by burying public documents. Sometimes they try to bully us with frivolous lawsuits. Sometimes reporters face personal legal jeopardy, like when The Intercept’s James Risen, then working for the New York Times, faced the threat of jail time because he refused to disclose his sources to the Obama administration.
Hard-hitting journalism creates powerful enemies, and sometimes those enemies hit back. It’s critical that we have a well-resourced legal team able to defend our journalists and insist on our rights.
Between Erik Prince, the Dakota Access pipeline legal fights, and the other legal battles we’re waging, our bills have piled up. We’re counting on your support to help make sure we never have to back down from a fight — a fight in which truth and the public’s right to know are on our side — merely for fear of legal costs.