On July 27, 2015 Wolfgang Halbig received notification via email that PayPal was closing his account associated with the Sandy Hook Justice website, the donations of which are used in an ongoing investigation of the curious Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.
“Due to the nature of your activities,” the notice reads, “we have chosen to discontinue service to you in accordance with PayPal’s User Agreement. As a result, we have placed a permanent limitation on your account.”
The email was issued by PayPal’s division of “Brand Risk Management.” The widely-recognized electronic payment service further requested that Halbig “remove all references to PayPal from your website. This includes removing PayPal as a payment option, as well as the PayPal logo and/or shopping cart.”
PayPal has offered Halbig no avenue for disputing the decision and, citing “data protection,” refuses to discuss the matter with MHB. Halbig also had his GoFundMe account mysteriously closed in October 2014, with GoFundMe claiming that Halbig’s activities constituted fraud.
A central question emerges: What forces have persuaded PayPal, a powerful company with a stock valuation of over $47 billion, to pull the plug on Halbig’s modest investigation and fundraising activities? Meanwhile numerous self-described “family victims” of the Sandy Hook massacre event are welcome by PayPal to continue soliciting tens of millions in donations via the service. Since when does PayPal weigh in on the nature and scope of a customer’s personal endeavors?
As many MHB readers know, since March of this year Halbig has made tremendous strides in having his long-oustanding public records requests of Newtown officials fulfilled. Attorney Monte Frank and his clients have used every obstruction to hamper such efforts. Halbig’s courageous new attorney Kay Wilson has reinvigorated disclosure actions. He is now moving on other fronts to bring the officials presiding over the most significant mass shooting in US history to account.
In the weeks preceding PayPal’s action Halbig noticed that he was receiving very few contributions toward his continuing efforts to investigate the Sandy Hook incident. This setback comes at a time when his efforts are gaining momentum.
For those interested in supporting Wolfgang’s efforts they may visit his website at sandyhookjustice.com.