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1/ THREAD: In his column on @ronanfarrow, @benyt, whom I have respect for, does the same thing he accuses Ronan of––sanding the inconvenient edges off of facts in order to suit the narrative he wants to deliver.
2/ We provided detailed responses to Ben that contradict the narrative he wants to tell. They didn’t make it into the column, so I’ll outline some of them here.
3/ Ben relies on a 2018 @newyorker piece on an IRS analyst John Fry to frame his case against Ronan, arguing “two years after publication, little of Mr. Farrow’s article holds up, according to prosecutors and court documents.”
4/This is just not true. I’d encourage ppl to read thru the court file on Pacer. It doesn’t contradict Ronan’s piece. Our story accurately reflects what was known at the time. And, after reviewing the records that are now available, it still holds up. We continue to stand by it.
5/ Ben writes: the records never went “missing...the records were simply put on restricted access...a possibility Mr. Farrow briefly allows for in his story, but minimizes. And Mr. Fry’s leaks had been encouraged and circulated by...Michael Avenatti.”
6/ It was not “minimized.” We say in the 4th graf the reports might be restricted, not deleted or removed. We describe the views of 7 former gov officials/experts we interviewed on whether the docs were missing or restricted. This was 200 of the story’s first 500 words.
7/ In Fry's sentencing hearing, his lawyer even said that “Mr. Fry learned that those SARs may have been walled off when the New Yorker wrote the article by Ronan Farrow who had talked to others who said it's possible that the SARs had been walled off.”
8/ Ben seems to suggest that Fry lied about his motivations for leaking the SARs. But that’s not established in the court record. The judge came to no conclusion about Fry’s motivation.
9/ The timeline that can be constructed from the court docs support what Fry told us: he realized that a SAR wasn’t in the database where, in his experience, it should have been, before leaking the records.
10/ This is a bit in the weeds, but the weeds are important here. The complaint establishes Fry searched for restricted SAR 8133 prior to showing any of the docs to Avenatti and came up empty.
11/ At the time, we didn’t have access to Fry’s communications w/ Avenatti, which came out in court records months later. Many other outlets had previously reported on the SARs without citing the source of their material, as is common practice.
12/ Read our story here:…
13/ Re: Lucia Evans and Harvey Weinstein, Ben acknowledges that her friend did not say anything to us that contradicted Evans’ account, that Weinstein had raped her, and generally supported her story.
14/ We disclosed that the friend could not confirm specifics, except that she had witnessed the meeting between Weinstein and Evans. That the friend later said something different to prosecutors does not make our reporting any less diligent.
15/ We take corrections seriously and would be happy to correct something if it were shown to be wrong. But Ben has not done that here.
16/ We are proud of @ronanfarrow’s reporting, and we stand by it.
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