Project Veritas files suit against ousted founder James O’Keefe

James O'Keefe, an American conservative political activist and founder of Project Veritas, meets with supporters during the Conservative Political Action Conference 2020 (CPAC) hosted by the American Conservative Union on February 28, 2020 in National Harbor, MD. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)
(Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

OAN’s Geraldyn Berry
2:57 PM – Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Project Veritas, a controversial media organization, is reportedly suing James O’Keefe, the firm’s ousted creator.


This comes as O’Keefe’s termination from the company had been announced in May. A number of Project Veritas staff members signed a statement accusing O’Keefe of turning into “a power-drunk tyrant” and being “outright cruel” to staff members.

On Wednesday, news outlets reported that a formal suit was filed in a New York federal court.

The organization claimed that the founder had bullied staff members, ran up enormous personal debt on company cards, and used Project Veritas resources to launch an additional new, competing media outlet.

O’Keefe’s conduct had been the subject of an internal investigation this year, as the board of the company had “heard allegations that O’Keefe routinely behaved unprofessionally during team meetings, including by screaming at coworkers and belittling them” and “particularly target[ing] female employees with mean-spirited comments about their lack of contributions to the companies and inappropriate comments about personal situations like pregnancies.”

According to the complaint, O’Keefe “regularly arrived late for meetings and was rude at VIP events designed to give donors extra access to O’Keefe,” leading to “strained relationships with several donors.”

The lawsuit continues by accusing O’Keefe of forcing workers to complete his personal chores, such as cleaning his yacht and collecting up his clothing.

O’Keefe allegedly used company funds, spending more than $10,000 “for a helicopter flight from New York to Maine without clear benefit to Project Veritas,” and expensing first-class air travel and luxury hotels. O’Keefe’s alleged penchant for black car services also cost Project Veritas “more than $150,000 over the past 18 months” as the company paid for cars “to go relatively short distances in and around Manhattan and then wait outside of restaurants for hours.”

It was during his suspension that O’Keefe had launched O’Keefe Media Group (OMG), a group with a similar mission to Project Veritas. The media organization claims that its’ founder had used Project Veritas resources like donor lists and laptops. As evidence, the company showed emails O’Keefe had sent to Project Veritas donors in late May stating “Hey there, I know you’ve been a supporter of my work in the last year” while hyper-linking to OMG’s subscription page.

O’Keefe founded Project Veritas in 2010. According to the lawsuit, O’Keefe was not officially kicked off the Project Veritas board until April 24th, and not formally fired until May 15th of this year.

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