Friday, September 19, 2014

The Wisner Trust: Heirs lose appeal, September 19, 2014

In a 5-0 ruling, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of Mayor Landrieu regarding the Wisner Trust.  I don't have the actual court decision yet and have not read it but I do know that the big take away from the decision is that the Trust is now officially done and done.  I'm anxious to read the decision because now the real fight begins as to what happens with the land and the decision may have set a precedent as to how that fight may unfold.

Here is a decision posted on the Fourth Circuit's website.

After reading the decision above it looks like these are the decisions:

1.  The Trust is dissolved as of last month, August, 2014.

2.  The Mayor should have gained consent from the Advisory Committee before disbursing the grant money.

3.  The Trust was a public body.

Of course I'm not sure why 2 or 3 matter at this point because if the Trust is dissolved, I would imagine the Advisory Committee will be dissolved along with it.


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Monday, September 08, 2014

Sympathy for the devil

Judge reduces sentence for Nagin-era technology vendor St. Pierre

I'm ok with this.  I really am.  I'm happy for the St. Pierre family.

St. Pierre getting 17 1/2 years in the pokey as opposed to Nagin's ten years makes no sense.

I sat through most of St. Pierre's and Nagin's trials as well as their sentencings.

Judge Berrigan's diatribe during the Nagin sentence felt like a bipolar rant.  It was excusatory at times and  hard for me to swallow knowing that only a small faction of Nagin's transgressions had been addressed in that nauseating trial.

Granted, Judge Berrigan probably didn't know what I know but at one point in his sentencing she went so far off the reservation as to suggest he "fought for the city in the wake of Katrina."  (that's paraphrased but the notion is hilarious nonetheless)

By the time Mitch Landrieu took over the city was at least 60 million in debt and MWH was running the show and billing by the hour.  To suggest Nagin did anything that helped the city in the wake of Katrina is a stretch.

She must have been reading DC while I was reading Marvel.

Nagin's sentencing was in stark contrast to Judge Fallon's sentencing of St. Pierre.  What I gleaned from Fallon's sentence was that Mark was unrepentant, he refused to admit guilt, and that pissed Fallon off.  It pissed me off too.

I knew the entire time that St. Pierre was just paying whoever Meffert told him to pay but the fact that he was standing in court claiming he was innocent was repulsive.

The hubris enraged me.

Then I watched Ray Nagin in court.  That trial pushed the bar down to even lower depths.    

Perhaps it was simply theater but if we're judging men by their psychopathy....Ray Nagin deserved twice the sentence Mark St. Pierre did.  I've said it a thousand times and I'll say it again...Ray Nagin is pathologically incapable of accepting responsibility for anything.  I think Mark St. Pierre is capable of that...he just became legally isolated on the other side of Meffert and Nagin by Mr. Fed.

Responsibility?  Being held accountable?  While we're on the subject, I really want to know how Ed Burns and George Solomon were never charged with bribery.

How does Ray Nagin get charged with bribery while SOME of the assholes who bribed him don't get charged?

Can anyone on Poydras Street, past or present, give me an answer?

I brought this issue up to a reporter at the Nagin trial and the reply was "Now is not the time to address it." An odd answer but ok, when is the time to address it?  The appeal?

And what I'm really curious about.....Winvestco....

Thursday, September 04, 2014

DHECC - Juneau perjured himself

E 10 with exhibits

This exhibit in BP's motion to remove Juneau as Claims Administrator of the Deepwater Horizon Economic Claims Center clearly shows that Juneau was representing the state against BP when he accepted his position.  He should have at least disclosed the potential conflict but not only did he hide it, he lied about it.

I went back and looked at Juneau's interview with Special Master Louis Freeh to see if Freeh asked Juneau if he had represented anyone in the BP litigation prior to accepting the position as Claims Administrator.  This interview was conducted under oath:

Start at line 7 on this page

"Now, I knew, from reading the newspaper -- I didn't have any involvement in anything in the spill.  I didn't represent any claimants in the spill, wasn't representing any defendants in the spill, had really no connection with the spill per se."

That's a bald-faced lie...we now know from the exhibit posted above.  It's also perjury because he was under oath in this interview.  And I'd like to see him play the "foggy memory card" because he prefaced the whole statement with "I vividly remember...".

BP lawyer Mark Holstein even says in the exhibit had he known of the conflict previously he would have brought it to the attention of Special Master Louis Freeh.  Well Freeh didn't even have to ask him, Juneau willingly denied having any "involvement with the spill" or having represented any claimants in the spill.

The reason this is a big deal is because Louis Freeh accused both Lionel Sutton and Christine Reitano of committing perjury when he interviewed them and suggested they be prosecuted for it, even though I don't think they did perjure themselves.  Here, Juneau clearly did so.

Louis Freeh is currently incapacitated due to injuries he suffered in a very serious automobile accident in Vermont.  Regardless of my opinion of his performance with the DHECC, I wish him a speedy recovery.

But someone within the Freeh Group should now make a statement regarding this matter of Juneau perjuring himself, no?  If this was such a serious matter regarding employees under the Claims Administrator it should be much more serious coming from the CA himself.  

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

DHECC - BP files motion to remove Pat Juneau

BP motion to remove Patrick Juneau as Claims Administrator

Looks like the hammer is dropping.  AZ is cited no less than nine times in the motion starting on page 30, mostly from the interview material with Lionel Sutton.

This may be the beginning of a house cleaning, very curious to see how Judge Barbier responds.   

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Rising Tide 9 - 2014

Yo peeps, it's that time of year.  Rising Tide 9 is upon us.  Sept. 13....same bat time same bat channel.  

Here is the schedule.

The panels are interesting and somewhat odd this year which makes for great discussion.  Come on out and support the Nawlin's blogging community...still kicking after nine years.  

Friday, August 15, 2014

DHECC - for better or worse

From the beginning of my reporting on the Deepwater Horizon Economic Claims Center and the Plaintiff Steering Committee (PSC) that was chosen to represent the entire class of claimants for their economic losses caused by the BP oil spill, I've alleged that the PSC expedited their own personal clients' claims ahead of everyone else in the class.  This was a clear violation of the terms of the settlement.

At first the allegation was denied.  Then I provided proof that they had expedited at least 409 claims, most of them their own, ahead of the other claimants with the full knowledge and consent of Claims Administrator Patrick Juneau.  The response then shifted from denial to "those claims were part of sampling program", as if that somehow justified the action.  The PSC and MSM's favorite go-to pundit on the settlement cried "It's much ado about nothing" while failing to disclose his own conflicts of interest.

The argument was also made that it didn't really matter if the PSC got their own clients paid first because everyone was going to get paid eventually anyway.

Then Act 495, a policy which requires claimants to match revenues to expenses, was passed and completely changed the terms of the settlement.  AZ commenter IN-HALE has been documenting the butchering effects of this act here on the blog since it was enacted.  Thousands of claims have already been kicked out or denied....we now have a completely different, more stringent, settlement class to the great benefit of BP and the great detriment of the remaining class claimants.

Now, BP is asking Judge Barbier to retroactively enforce act 495 and claw back claims that have already been paid out that did not match revenues to expenses.

The PSC just filed this opposition memorandum in Judge Barbier's court petitioning the judge to deny the retroactive enforcement of 495 which would prevent these claw backs.  I want you to read the language the PSC used (right out of the gate on page 1) from the original settlement contract agreed to by both BP and the PSC:
If the Court does approve the proposed class action settlement, an appellate court could reverse the approval.  In addition, it is possible that the terms of the proposed settlement may change in the future-for - for better or worse - as a result of further legal proceedings.  However, if you sign this Individual Release, none of those uncertain future events will affect you....  In fact, even if the Court does not approve the proposed class action settlement agreement or the approval is reversed by an appellate court, you shall continue to be bound by this Individual Release. 
In the initial settlement agreement the PSC acknowledged that the terms of the settlement may change.  They acknowledged this possibility, in print, in the agreement they wrote.  They were fully aware that 495 or another deviation could change the terms of the original settlement down the road and still they expedited their own claims ahead of every one else's.

They are now using this language to try and block 495 from being enacted retroactively which may affect their own personal claims as well as thousands and thousands of others.  That's still not going to help the remaining claimants who never got a dime from the settlement and are now shit outta luck.

So....I want someone to tell me how the PSC expediting their own claims is not a big deal.

Please...I'm all ears.

In specific, I'd love Louis Freeh to answer that.