Wednesday, February 20, 2013

BCS Defies the Courts (Again)

2009-10 Attorney's Fees

Regular readers will recall that, along with the 2012-13 litigation, we still have another sword hanging over our heads- the BCS motion for attorney's fees in the 2009-10 case.  A quick refresher of that activity:

February 2012:  BCS began threatening that they wanted to collect attorney fees.

July 2012:  BCS files actual demand for $1.3M in fees.

Aug 2012:  LASD files discovery to understand the fee demands. BCS refuses to answer the discovery.

Sept 2012:  During the "meet and confer process", the Judge decides she'll need to hear full arguments on discovery.

Oct 2012:  Oral arguments are heard on the discovery motion.  BCS counsel is defiant during the hearing, despite several cautions from the Judge. 

Nov 2012:  The Judge rules for LASD on the discovery, and grants sanctions of $51,000 for BCS' incomprehensible stonewalling of the discovery process.

Dec 2012:  BCS appeals the sanctions, and the discovery (as closely as they can).  The appeals court returns a ruling in < 48 hours, denying both requests.  BCS attorney calls the sanctions "monopoly money", and insists the District "will never see a dime"

Jan 2013:  District follows up on discovery.  BCS asserts that they have "no documents responsive to the request.

Now at this point, one might wonder why BCS put up so much of a fight.  If they had no documents, it would seem strange to spend a lot of energy fighting the issue. 

Feb 2013:  The reality, though, is that there are documents- but BCS has apparently decided to defy the courts and not produce them.  The District is following up with BCS, and is making clear that we will once again seek sanctions, including "issue sanctions".  (Basically, in addition to reimbursing LASD for the money we've spent forcing them to comply with a court order, the Judge could simply rule in our favor on something, essentially as a penalty for their abuse of the discovery process.)

As always, I've included the complete correspondence.
Letter to BCS counsel
3rd Set of Interrogatories
3rd Set of Request for Production

We've also prepared the documentation to request the actual sanctions.  According to the court rules, we prepare these, but wait to file them later.  Yes, we're following the process, because we intend to follow through and request these sanctions.

Notice of Motion for Monetary Sanctions
POS Motion for Monetary Sanctions

For those who wonder why we can't spend as much time in negotiations, this kind of nonsense is a great example.  Complying with Discovery is one of the most basic things you do in litigation.  Yet BCS has chosen to litigate this issue several times over, fighting LASD every step of the way.  There simply is no justification for it (as evidenced by the sanctions imposed by Judge Lucas, and upheld by the Appellate Court).  When we have to do this sort of work every day, there just isn't much time for anything else.

To see related blog posts, click the "Attorney's Fees" label below.