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A federal bankruptcy judge on Thursday blocked efforts by the parents of a Sandy Hook victim to collect the $50 million they won in a lawsuit against conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.

Earlier this month, lawyers for the parents of six-year-old Jesse Lewis obtained an order from a Texas state judge allowing them to immediately begin collecting assets from Jones’ company, Free Speech Systems, after its bankruptcy proceedings failed.

But on Thursday, Southern District of Texas Judge Christopher Lopez put the brakes on that effort, saying the state judge’s ruling violated federal bankruptcy law. Lopez sided with a new court-appointed trustee who had accused some Sandy Hook families of trying to engage in “value-destroying money-making” before completing the sale of Infowars’ parent company.

Lopez said the trustee will continue to sell Jones’ assets — including Jones’s media site Infowars — and then distribute the proceeds equally among all of Jones’ creditors. The creditors include other relatives of Sandy Hook victims who were awarded more than $1.4 billion in lawsuits after Jones falsely claimed the 2012 mass murder was a hoax.

Mark Bankston, who represents Jesse’s parents, Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin, told The Daily Beast that his clients are “frustrated that they will not be allowed to pursue their rights in state court after all.”

“It appears that this case remains in limbo, to Mr. Jones’ delight, while the other group of plaintiffs insists they are entitled to almost all of the compensation and refuses to treat all parents equally,” said Bankston, who represents five clients in three cases. “Our clients have repeatedly offered to act as equal partners in collecting with other plaintiffs against Jones, with all parents collecting the same amount, but we have been continually rebuffed.”

The Associated Press reported that Jones said during his Thursday show on Infowars that he has plans to resume his broadcasts on another platform after Infowars shuts down in the next few months, calling Lewis and Heslin’s efforts in state court “illegal.”

His bankruptcy attorney, Vickie Driver, said in a statement to The Daily Beast: “Mr. Jones has spent over two years trying to pay plaintiffs more than he ever deserved, and none of it has been enough. He continues to work with the trustee to maximize the remaining value of his estate and Free Speech’s assets for the benefit of plaintiffs who want to be paid, not just try to silence him. As Judge Lopez said on June 14, these cases were never about shutting down his show, but about paying creditors.”

The shocking suspension is the latest legal maneuver in an ongoing saga attempting to collect money from Jones in two separate cases – one in Texas, where he lives, and one in Connecticut, where the school shooting occurred. While the Sandy Hook parents were awarded a total of $1.4 billion in 2022 for the emotional distress and defamation caused by Jones’ false statements, they have yet to see any of the money after he filed for bankruptcy in the wake of the two verdicts.

NBC reported that the families in the Connecticut case also rejected a push by Texas plaintiffs to ask a state judge to force Free Systems to hand over “all the money,” arguing that doing so could lead to a dispute over which plaintiff would receive Jones’ assets.

“To be clear, the Connecticut families support an orderly liquidation of FSS’s assets and a pro rata distribution among FSS’s creditors who have legitimate claims,” ​​the families wrote in a motion this week supporting the trustee’s emergency motion. “The Texas families clearly do not share the same goals. Rather, they seek preferential treatment and excessive compensation by attempting to win the very path to court that they allegedly avoided on June 14.”

However, Bankston told The Daily Beast that his clients “supported a bankruptcy plan that would give the families tens of millions and force Jones to never speak about Sandy Hook again, but the other plaintiffs vetoed that plan as well.” He added that his team would continue to work for “resolution, closure and peace” for his clients.

“The families of Connecticut have always sought a fair and equitable distribution of Free Speech System assets for all families, and today’s decision puts us back on that path,” Christopher Mattei, an attorney representing the families in the Connecticut lawsuit, told AP.

On Thursday, Lopez seemed aware of the ongoing rift between the two grieving families and declined to take the dispute to court.

“Let’s just follow the rules, the code and the order,” he said.