Did US Navy JAG Just Execute Oprah Winfrey?!

Did the US Navy JAG just execute Oprah Winfrey?! Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!


Claim : US Navy JAG Executes Oprah Winfrey

On 23 February 2024, Real Raw News posted an article (archive) claiming that Oprah Winfrey was just sentenced to death, for being an accessory to mass murder in the Maui inferno!

As usual, the article is long, rambling and confusing, so here is an excerpt. Please feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

JAG Executes Oprah Winfrey

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Truth : US Navy JAG Did Not Execute Oprah Winfrey

The truth is – this is just another fake story created by Real Raw News, just to generate page views and money.

Fact #1 : Oprah Winfrey Was Not Arrested / Sentenced To Death

Let me just start by pointing out that Oprah Winfrey has not been executed, arrested, or sentenced to death, for being an accessory to mass murder in the Maui inferno, or any other reason.

Oprah Winfrey is a mega celebrity, and one of the richest women in the world, with a net worth of $3.5 billion as of May 2023. If she was ever arrested, it would have been international news.

Yet, no legitimate media outlet, not even celebrity blogs, have reported that Oprah Winfrey was in any legal trouble, never mind arrested, sentenced to death, and then executed by hanging!

We know this for sure because Oprah herself posted about her speaking with Tyler Perry on resilience and forgiveness in her latest “The Life You Want” class on 23 February 2024.

You may note that this occurred four days after the US Navy JAG (Judge Advocate General) supposedly executed Oprah Winfrey by hanging, on 19 February 2024.

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Fact #2 : JAG Has No Powers Over Civilians

The claim that the US Navy JAG executed Oprah Winfrey for being an accessory to mass murder in the 2023 Maui fire is absurd.

The Judge Advocate General’s Corps is the military justice branch of the American military. It has no powers or jurisdiction over civilians like Oprah Winfrey. The civilian justice system is separate from the military justice system. JAG officers can only prosecute US military service members.

Only in rare exceptions are JAG officers allowed to prosecute civilians. For example, if the civilian committed a crime on a military base, or while working in a foreign country and the local laws allow it. They can also prosecute civilians with special authority from the President, or Congress.

Fact #3 : JAG Officers Cannot Arrest Anyone

JAG officers are not law enforcement officers. They are really military lawyers, and have no powers to arrest anyone – not even military personnel.

They can investigate crimes, defend or prosecute service members accused of those crimes. But JAG officers cannot actually arrest anyone. They certainly cannot act as judge, jury, and executioner!

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Fact #4 : Death Sentences Take Years To Execute

It is also hilarious that Real Raw News readers actually believe the bullshit that someone sentenced to death would be executed just days later.

That may be possible in a country like North Korea, but certainly not in the United States, where death row inmates wait an average of 178 months – about 15 years after their sentencing, before they are executed.

In fact, none of the six Gitmo inmates charged with capital crime in the 9/11 attacks in 2001, and the attack on USS Cole in 2000, have actually been trialled to date, never mind convicted and sentenced to death.

Fact #5 : US Military Has Not Executed Anyone Since 1961

Even though the US military has killed many combatants intentionally, and civilians as collateral damage, they have not executed prisoners since 1961.

There are four US military inmates on death row, but none of them have been executed so far.

Fact #6 : Real Raw News Is A Fake News Website

Real Raw News is a fake news website that capitalises on making shocking but fake stories to generate page views and money.

To protect himself from legal repercussions, the owner and writer, Michael Baxter (real name – Michael Tuffin), claims that his articles are “humour, parody, and satire“.

That disclaimer, which is not clearly mentioned in his articles, lets him keep creating fake news to go viral, and generate money.

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A March 2018 screenshot of Michael Tuffin, who goes by the pseudonym Michael Baxter

His articles have been regularly debunked as fake news, so you should NEVER share anything from his website. Here are some of his fake stories that I debunked earlier:

Everything posted by Real Raw News should be regarded as FAKE NEWS, until proven otherwise.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out, and please SUPPORT our work!


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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.


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