— -- Gawker lost its bid today to get a new trial in its legal battle with former wrestler Hulk Hogan.
Hogan had sued for invasion of privacy and won $140 million in damages from the case back in March.
During the trial, Gawker's legal team claimed publishing the Hogan video, which featured him having sex with Heather Clem, the former wife of Hogan's estranged best friend Todd Clem, was protected by the First Amendment, especially with Hogan being a celebrity. Furthermore, Gawker’s lawyer, Michael Berry, claimed Hogan filed his lawsuit just to get “lots and lots of money.”
But Hogan's legal team noted today that the court has sided with Hogan yet again today in a St. Petersburg courtroom.
"The court today denied Gawker's request for a new trial and to reduce damages. Plaintiff Bollea believes rightfully so," Hogan's legal team said in a statement after the request was denied, referring to Hogan's real name, Terry Gene Bollea.
"Gawker has failed and continues to fail in recognizing their obligation to Bollea for their reprehensible behavior and method of doing what they call journalism. Their refusal to accept responsibility for their conduct and denial of the obvious continues to drive their litigation strategy," Hogan's legal team added.
Hogan received the $140 million verdict earlier this year, when a jury in Florida awarded $55 million in economic damages and $60 million for emotional distress. An extra $25 million was added on for punitive damages.
"We're exceptionally happy with the verdict," Hogan's team said in a statement in March. "We think it represents a statement as to the public's disgust with the invasion of privacy disguised as journalism. The verdict says no more."
During the trial, Hogan said he had no knowledge that his encounter with Clem was being filmed, thus it was a protected private moment. When the tape was released and published on Gawker, Hogan told the court, "my whole world went upside down."
After losing the case to Hogan and his legal team, Gawker founder Nick Denton released a statement about the company's plan to appeal.
“Given key evidence and the most important witness were both improperly withheld from this jury, we all knew the appeals court will need to resolve the case. I want to thank our lawyers for their outstanding work and am confident that we would have prevailed at trial if we had been allowed to present the full case to the jury. That’s why we feel very positive about the appeal that we have already begun preparing, as we expect to win this case ultimately," he said.