"I didn't say anyone was guilty (or might be guilty) of anything. "George" stated that libel is a civil issue, not a criminal issue. I pointed out that this is not always correct."
The discussion here is ONLY about "civil law" libel. Whenever there was a discussion about defamation and libel on Cold Filter, it was *always* about civil, NEVER about criminal law. Bringing criminal libel into this is a rather poor attempts to obfuscate the issue. I also happen to think that the relevant recent comments made here by principals tend to indicate retraction of the original retraction. As for the original 5-page retraction, we have never seen the document, so it is unknown whether it also covered “conspiracy to libel” with another (unnamed) participant. As far as I know he was even more forceful in making and repeating those objectionable statements and to this day he did not retract those statements.
As for the successfully carried out punishment after a conviction under the “criminal libel” statutes in USA, I think it is even rarer nowadays then getting hit by a meteorite. If I ever were charged with a libel, I would prefer to be charged under the criminal, rather than civil statute. As the old saying goes “Snow in the hell has better chance...”