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PayPal bans social media platform Gab after Pittsburgh synagogue shooting

Robert Bowers, 46, was an obsessive Gab user who often posted of hating Jews

PayPal has banned social media platform Gab from accepting payments after the revelation that the accused synagogue shooter was an obsessive Gab user who frequently posted about his hatred for Jews.

Gab said on Saturday that it had been banned from PayPal, payment processor Stripe, and hosting service Joyent within a matter of hours after the shooting in Pittsburgh.

Accused shooter Robert Bowers, 46, was a heavy Gab user who posted a message minutes before the shooting, accusing the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society of bringing in ‘invaders’ and announcing ‘I’m going in.’

Gab markets itself as a social media alternative that is devoted to absolute free speech, and has become popular with racist fringe users in recent years as they have been kicked off of Facebook and Twitter.

Eleven people died and six were injured after the shooting in the Tree of Life synagogue during Saturday morning Sabbath services. 

Bowers was apprehended at the Tree of Life synagogue (above) in Pittsburgh on Saturday, after a shooting massacre that left 11 dead and six injured

Bowers was apprehended at the Tree of Life synagogue (above) in Pittsburgh on Saturday, after a shooting massacre that left 11 dead and six injured

The bio section of Bowers' Gab profile reads: ‘jews are the children of satan'. The header image shows a device that measures bullet velocity displaying the numerical racist code '1488'

The bio section of Bowers’ Gab profile reads: ‘jews are the children of satan’. The header image shows a device that measures bullet velocity displaying the numerical racist code ‘1488’

He posted this about the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society minutes before the shooting

He posted this about the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society minutes before the shooting

Among his antisemitic comments on the social network Gab are complaints about Trump

Among his antisemitic comments on the social network Gab are complaints about Trump

Gab said in a statement after the shooting that it ‘unequivocally disavows and condemns all acts of terrorism and violence’, and had immediately acted to preserve the data from Bower’s account and provide it to law enforcement.

The company deactivated Bowers’ account but an archived version of the posts remains available.

He seemed enraged by the recent migrant caravan, and accused Jewish groups of encouraging and facilitating immigration to the U.S.

Bowers was also sharply critical of President Donald Trump, accusing him of being a ‘globalist’ and painting him as a puppet of Jewish interests.  

After suspension of service from PayPal and others amid growing backlash, Gab accused the ‘big tech giants’ of ‘direct collusion.’ 

Jewish residents who live near the synagogue are pictured outside after the shooting. At least 11 died and six were injured, including four police officers

Jewish residents who live near the synagogue are pictured outside after the shooting. At least 11 died and six were injured, including four police officers

Bowers posted his antisemitic views on Gab, which markets itself as a free speech platform

Bowers posted his antisemitic views on Gab, which markets itself as a free speech platform

A spokesman for PayPal confirmed that the company had cancelled Gab’s account in a statement to DailyMail.com on Sunday. 

‘PayPal has been closely monitoring Gab and was in the process of canceling the site’s account before the tragic events occurred,’ PayPal spokesman Justin Higgs said.

‘When a site is allowing the perpetuation of hate, violence or discriminatory intolerance, we take immediate and decisive action,’ he added. 

Gab posted correspondence from Stripe on Saturday that indicated the payment processor had also been reviewing Gab’s policies prior to the attack.

A source familiar with the undated correspondence told DailyMail.com that it was authentic and referred to a deadline on Friday, prior to the attack.

A spokeswoman for Stripe declined to comment, citing policy against speaking about individual customers. Joyent did not immediately respond to inquiries from DailyMail.com.

On Sunday, Gab lashed out at the mainstream media in a series of tweets, accusing journalists of maliciously branding the site a haven for hate in the clamor to shut it down.

‘We have a community of great people from all around the world. To broadly generalize ~800,000 people based on the horrific actions and words of one man is really sad,’ Gab said in a tweet responding to TV personality Montel Williams.

Williams had called Gab ‘the network of choice for every fringe freak from the garbage can of American society’ and predicted the site was ‘about to get shut down.’

‘Friends we know many of you are upset about what is happening to Gab, but please focus on the victims, families and friends of this horrible tragedy,’ Gab said in a statement.

‘It’s disgusting that the media is centering their focus on Gab instead of honoring the victims or denouncing the alleged terrorist,’ the company said.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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