The families of two Americans killed in the 2012 attacks on the diplomatic mission in Benghazi have filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit against Hillary Clinton, claiming that she was responsible because of her use of a private email server while she was head of the State Department, according to media reports.
The lawsuit filed by Patricia Smith and Charles Woods, the parents of Sean Smith and Tyrone Woods, also claims that Clinton defamed the families in her public statements.
“The Benghazi attack was directly and proximately caused, at a minimum by defendant Clinton’s ‘extreme carelessness’ in handling confidential and classified information,” the lawsuit alleges, according to NBC News.
Smith was an information management officer and Woods was a security officer in Libya.
Both families have been publicly critical of Clinton. Smith was a featured speaker at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where she said she blamed Clinton for her son’s death. Woods has appeared on cable news shows, saying on CNN last week that Clinton had proved “incapable” of protecting Americans in Benghazi.
They are represented by Larry Klayman of Judicial Watch, a conservative organization that has been critical of Clinton and sought her emails from her private server during her tenure as secretary of state, according to media reports.
Clinton campaign spokesman Nick Merrill told NBC News that the claims in the lawsuit have already been subjected to intense scrutiny.
“While no one can imagine the pain of the families of the brave Americans we lost at Benghazi, there have been nine different investigations into this attack and none found any evidence whatsoever of any wrongdoing on the part of Hillary Clinton,” he said.
The two parents also said in the lawsuit that when Clinton met them after their sons’ deaths, she told them that the attacks were motivated by a controversial film. But they said she later denied making such a statement and implied that they had remembered the encounter incorrectly.