NBC should not be punished because it listened to "lies" by Wayne Newton, an attorney for the network told a federal judge in Las Vegas last week in arguments seeking reversal of a $22.8 million libel judgment. Floyd Abrams told U.S. District Judge Myron Crocker that Newton had lied to Nevada gaming authorities before he was licensed to buy the Aladdin hotel-casino in October, 1980. Newton sued the network for defamation following newscasts that linked him to organized crime figures. A federal court jury awarded Newton $19.3 million and the singer was awarded another $3.5 million a month later on a special loss of income ruling by the court. NBC is seeking to overturn the judgment or allow a new trial. Crocker has not indicated when he will rule.