Wednesday, May 18, 2011

UPDATE on the story "Bloggers get sued for expressing their opinion on conduct of another attorney"

In an interesting bit of news, a lawyer whose conduct was ctiricized by the press and bloggers over the internet has sued 74 defendants including several bloggers whose blogs I follow regularly. 

At the risk of getting added to the lawsuit, I will repeat part of the story here.  The story apparently started with an article in the Washington Post that stated that a Superior Court judge in Washington DC declared a mistrial in a murder case in which the judge thought the attorney exhibited "numerous signs that he [the attorney] lacked knowledge of proper trial procedure" and that went on to say that the judge told the attorney "during a hearing . . . that he was “astonished” at his performance and at his “not having a good grasp of legal procedures”".  Here is a link to a comment by one of the jurors in the case.  (Thanks to Simple Justice for the link.)

Following this story, a number of bloggers commented on the lawyer's conduct.  The news today is that the attorney has fired back by suing them for defamation.  Two of those bloggers have commented on the situation here and here.  This second comment, in the blog "Simple Justice", is really worth a look.  It opines that "[t]he substance of the action is not merely frivolous, but the action was brought in New York Supreme Court, and had [the plaintiff's] lawyer done some homework, he would [have] learn[ed] that New York's long arm statute expressly excludes defamation."  Simple Justice then identifies the plaintiff's attorney and quotes his ads on CraigsList and in the Pennysaver, which is pretty interesting.

UPDATE (May 18): Eric Turkewitz, one of the bloggers sued, has posted an great response (with links to more information) to the lawsuit here.  It is very much worth reading.

Go here for a list of posts on the case.