For those of us who thought we had seen it all, The Texas Lawyer [reproduced in Law.com — thanks to my student, Jon Strang, for the hat tip] reports on an astounding case. Two San Antonio lawyers, married to each other, face trial on theft charges. It is alleged that the wife initiated sexual liaisons with four men whom the husband then threatened with litigation unless they compensated him for his “emotional distress.” Over $144,000 was apparently garnered by the couple in such “settlements.”
We don’t (alas) have a general “loser pays” rule in American tort law. But if you’re a corporation, especially an insurer, and you are a defendant, and you lose a tort suit, sometimes we have a “loser REALLY pays” rule.
The birthplace of Jesus is facing one of the darkest chapters in its history, according to Bethlehem Mayor Victor Batarsehís just-delivered annual Christmas address, and of course itís all the fault of the Jews.
When a client hesitated over paying his bill, Richard Ledingham threatened her with criminal prosecution for “theft of services.” He also warned that she might lose her business, her home and her professional license.
Wow — kudos to Claudia Rossett for reporting, in the New York Sun, about Kofi Annan and family’s occupation, for 18 years, of lodgings on Roosevelt Island that are meant for low-income families. Annan’s wife, a wealthy Swede, has often hectored Americans on their lack of help to the poor. His brother, the current tenant of the apartment, is apparently Ghana’s ambassador to Morocco. I guess the post requires a New York address….
As much of the Western world busies itself with merriment in preparation for the celebrations of Chanukah and Christmas, the light is fading rapidly in the scarred vastness of Darfur. In the latest indication of how bleak the situation is, the United Nations recently evacuated its staff from El Fasher, capital of northern Darfur, one of the two major centers for its relief operation to what the world body itself has termed “the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.”
The seven-member jury answered “no” on a verdict questionnaire when asked if evidence showed that Merck failed to adequately warn Anthony Dedrick’s doctors of any known risk posed by Vioxx, or that the lack of such a warning was a cause of Dedrick’s heart attack.
Here’s blog coverage of a forceful statement from Emory University professor Kenneth Stein, who has reportedly resigned as Middle East Fellow of the Carter Center — in protest against Carter’s recently released book.
Tyler Moody, 18, was killed Jan. 7, 2003, when he lost control of the sport utility vehicle while he was passing another vehicle in a no passing zone on a curve. The SUV left the road and rolled at least 1 1/2 times, coming to rest on its roof.
Officials at an elementary school in Attleboro, Mass. have banned kids from playing tag, touch football and any other unsupervised chase game during recess. The schoolís principal instituted the rule, citing the risk of injury and litigation. Hereís the story from the Boston Herald and the AP.
Legal ethics rules in all fifty states absolutely prevent lawyers from assisting their clients in the commission of criminal acts. Confidentiality and lawyer-client privilege rules have, everywhere that we know of, “crime-fraud” exceptions — communications sent by the client to the lawyer to facilitate the commission of future crimes are NOT confidential. Treason, in every state in the land, is severely punishable, even by death.
MetroTimes, the Detroit “alternative” newspaper, has a one-sided article concerning a defamation suit launched by Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals, Inc. against the Ecology Center of Ann Arbor. The Center has been blasting Morton Grove for its legal sale of Lindane for head lice.
Judge Jack Weinstein, a nontoriously activist senior (semi-retired) federal judge, has authorized a class action tobacco suit for all smokers of “light” cigarettes, based on fraud. It is a nationwide class, though of course individual cases and state law on fraud will vary. Tobacco stocks sunk 5% immediately on the news.