Thursday, April 03, 2014

DHECC - The Good Ole Boys Club gives Lerner the finger

Judge Barbier has simply denied Lerner's motion for discovery stating it's not relevant to Freeh's investigation.

Order denying Lerner motion for discovery

Amazing.

At this point, I don't think it's possible to seek any form of justice with this Court or what's happened with the settlement.  Joe Nocera was right, this is a good ole boys' club and it is as corrupt as anything I've ever written about on this blog....more corrupt...including Nagin.  Yes, I honestly believe that.

We have a federal judge covering up unethical actions by local, politically-connected attorneys while allowing a special court appointed investigator to accuse and recommend criminal prosecution for un-politically-connected people for the exact same thing. In fact, the accused's transgressions are pale in comparison to what the PSC attorneys have been proven to have done.

I'm going to say it very clearly...this judiciary is hopelessly corrupt.  It's actions are untenable.

I believe this Court's actions to be criminal and the people that will suffer are the people of the Gulf whose lives have been wrecked by the effects of this oil spill.

I'm just at a loss...I can't believe the DOJ, FBI, MDL board...some federal entity....is not investigating this Court, Special Master Freeh, the PSC and the Claims Office' actions.  

And here's a question...why did Barbier rule on this?  I thought this was in Shushan's hands?  Why would he have stepped in and dismissed the motion?

UPDATE COMMENT BUMP:


Sutton has left a new comment on your post "DHECC - The Good Ole Boys Club gives Lerner the fi...": 

I can't say that I am surprised. At all.

Christine Reitano had an employment contract with Pat Juneau. Not only did the contract state that she could only be fired for an enumerated cause, it specifically required that Juneau allow her 10 days to cure any any alleged cause.

She was fired June 2013. No cause was identified and she was given no opportunity to cure whatever infraction was being claimed. 

A state court claim was filed alleging that Juneau breached Louisiana contracts law. It was improperly removed directly into the MDL and Judge Barbier issued an immediate stay. She was not allowed to challenge the removal. She has not been allowed to conduct any discovery. She has no trial date. She has been denied all due process.

Christine Reitano has been out of work for over 10 months. Although Louis Freeh only recommended that she not be allowed to represent any claimants, and subsequent affidavits show that his recommendation was based on false evidence, and the Judge won't give her a trial to prove that, Juneau has refused to allow her to help any claimants. Not only that, but any claimant that even requested to be represented by her was immediately turned over to special investigations. Even a claimant with a claim that had been previously denied and no money paid.

In December 9, 2013, you wrote:
A federal judge has a lot of power...in the U.S. court system that is. He/she has the ability to seal documents, hide testimony and discovery, even interrupt or deny the due process of justice which by law should be afforded to the accused. I remember my journalism law professor at Ole Mis, Jere Hoar, telling our class that in many ways a federal judge is more powerful than a seated president . I didn't understand what he meant at the time but I fully understand it now. "

You were right. But when a judge uses that power to prevent a citizen from having any access to the judicial system itself, we should all be asking the same questions you raise in this post.

This woman is not under any criminal investigation. She is not under any ethical investigation. She has been defamed on two continents and effectively denied the opportunity to earn a living. Why? Because she has the answers to the questions we should all be asking.


This Judge will never allow full discovery. He will never allow a hearing. He will never allow us to question witnesses under oath. He will never allow us to face our accusers. But, as you also stated on December 9, he can't control the first amendment, and the truth will eventually bubble up.

With all due respect, Sutton, the truth has bubbled up....at least enough of it to know there were some really shitty things going on.  I have no idea what all Christine knows but it's very apparent Judge Barbier is using the power of the Court to deny truth and any sense of justice in order to mute her voice.  The judge and the special master are obviously not interested in the truth...it's become painfully apparent.  

The whole thing sickens me.     

31 comments:

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

I feel like I'm in a bubble. Am I the only one paying attention to this bullshit?

Sutton said...

I can't say that I am surprised. At all.

Christine Reitano had an employment contract with Pat Juneau. Not only did the contract state that she could only be fired for an enumerated cause, it specifically required that Juneau allow her 10 days to cure any any alleged cause.

She was fired June 2013. No cause was identified and she was given no opportunity to cure whatever infraction was being claimed.

A state court claim was filed alleging that Juneau breached Louisiana contracts law. It was improperly removed directly into the MDL and Judge Barbier issued an immediate stay. She was not allowed to challenge the removal. She has not been allowed to conduct any discovery. She has no trial date. She has been denied all due process.

Christine Reitano has been out of work for over 10 months. Although Louis Freeh only recommended that she not be allowed to represent any claimants, and subsequent affidavits show that his recommendation was based on false evidence, and the Judge won't give her a trial to prove that, Juneau has refused to allow her to help any claimants. Not only that, but any claimant that even requested to be represented by her was immediately turned over to special investigations. Even a claimant with a claim that had been previously denied and no money paid.

In December 9, 2013, you wrote:
A federal judge has a lot of power...in the U.S. court system that is. He/she has the ability to seal documents, hide testimony and discovery, even interrupt or deny the due process of justice which by law should be afforded to the accused. I remember my journalism law professor at Ole Mis, Jere Hoar, telling our class that in many ways a federal judge is more powerful than a seated president . I didn't understand what he meant at the time but I fully understand it now. "

You were right. But when a judge uses that power to prevent a citizen from having any access to the judicial system itself, we should all be asking the same questions you raise in this post.

This woman is not under any criminal investigation. She is not under any ethical investigation. She has been defamed on two continents and effectively denied the opportunity to earn a living. Why? Because she has the answers to the questions we should all be asking.

This Judge will never allow full discovery. He will never allow a hearing. He will never allow us to question witnesses under oath. He will never allow us to face our accusers. But, as you also stated on December 9, he can't control the first amendment, and the truth will eventually bubble up.

Kevin said...


Are you giving up all possibility that your letter to SM Freeh will make a difference? It would mean Freeh would have to do a 180 on his prior finding that Pat Juneau is without sin, but stranger things have happened.

Do you think Lerner's clients have a claim against the Class Reps and/or Class Counsel? Andry probably won't want to participate in that, either. No matter. Any suit like that will be sent to the shelf like Christine Reitano's state employment contract suit. Was her contract with Juneau or BP?


Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

"Are you giving up all possibility that your letter to SM Freeh will make a difference?"

Of course I am. Freeh is at the service of the Court....Barbier just stated that none of the discovery material requested by Lerner is germane to Freeh's investigation. Barbier just gave Freeh an order not to investigate it, did he not? This cover-up lies solely on the shoulders of Judge Carl J. Barbier...period. Not Freeh, not Shushan, not even Juneau or the PSC....the guy hiding the crimes is Judge Carl J. Barbier.

What's happened now is that everyone running this show is content.

BP is now content because they have 70+ Freeh employees in the Claims Office blocking, fuck'snuing and clawing back claims that would have easily passed through the GCCF...they don't need to collapse the settlement now.

Freeh is a big winner as he cherry picked a rather benign matter out of the pack, ran that up the flag pole claiming his wonderful investigative skills had uncovered this particular issue of corruption within the Claims Office....except he didn't uncover it....it was handed to him when he took the contract and I am pretty sure who handed it to him. Almost a year later he has expanded his company's role to 70+ employees that are essentially doing the bidding of BP. He's running around the country staying at the Ritz every night, yucking it up on money that should be going to people affected by the oil spill.

The PSC is a big winner as they got all their own claims processed through the program first, they got their own clients...and relatives...paid first and paid well. Now they don't really give a shit about Freeh's presence and the settlement payments grinding to a halt or changing the rules to the settlement in mid-stream because they already got paid and they will get a 600 million dollar bonus check to boot.

Juneau doesn't give a shit as long as his own corruption in the process isn't exposed.

Barbier is only concerned with protecting his buddies on the PSC and keeping Freeh on a short leash.

Welker...he's most likely there to make sure the FBI doesn't get involved.

The whole thing is fucked and there's nowhere to turn...nowhere. The people who are still suffering from this oil spill are the big losers. Meanwhile the PSC members are laughing all the way to the bank, buying up politicians and re-setting for the next big class action con-game to come down the pipe.

BP had another spill in Lake Michigan?

PSC Lawyers: Whoo hoo!!! Call BP up and tell 'em we'll "sue" 'em.....they love it when we "sue" 'em. We'll herd the cats, sprinkle some catnip on 'em then watch 'em slowly wander off and die along with the entire ecosystem of this country's waterways.

That's whats happening here....that's exactly what's happening here.

Anonymous said...

I read a great detective story recently.

Red Square is set in the Russia and Germany of the early 1990s. The main character is a Moscow investigator.

A cool standout thought, expressed when our hero was getting taken off the case by those higher up the tree, was that there are two kinds of investigation:

The kind where you wnt to find out the truth about what happened...

... and the more usual kind where the point is to hide the truth to come up with a neat and tidy version of events that fits the one desired by those with some power.

This second kind is described as more difficult, as the truth must still be figured out and worked with to ensure that there are no messy loose ends that will destroy the carefully stage managed desired result.

This passage both depressed me and cheered me up.

Depressed me, because who wants that to be reality?

Cheered me up, because hearing someone tell a truth you have perceived, but not voiced, makes you laugh with surprised pleasure.

Judges and the power of the judiciary has been a long term worry of mine. The dangers and threats of a corrupted court is something that remains a worry no matter how you set up your system-- elected, appointed, term limits, lifetime berths.

But judicial independance is also important. I`ve recommended The Tyrannicide Brief, a book about the lawyer who bravely prosecuted Charles the First, before on this blog.

The courage shown by that lawyer helped to enshrine some of the principles we`re supposed to be upholding when we grant tenure or independance to university profs or to judges. We gave them these freedoms to protect us all from corrupt Kings.

Going back to see how and why we wanted to create some of the currently troublesome aspects of the system we have now is worth doing as we all try to figure out how to proceed to fix it.

Your brave assertion of the power of the free press, a version of the freedoms we gave to judges and profs, but extended to ordinary people in the masterstroke of the American project, is about the best part of this tradition left.

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

"Your brave assertion of the power of the free press, a version of the freedoms we gave to judges and profs, but extended to ordinary people in the masterstroke of the American project, is about the best part of this tradition left."

Thank you for that, sincerely. Although I must admit I feel painfully impotent at the moment.

Kevin said...



Jason:

I'm not an attorney, and not to be argumentative, but I have to disagree with your statement that:

"Barbier just stated that none of the discovery material requested by Lerner is germane to Freeh's investigation."

The following is cut and pasted from Judge Barbier's order dated yesterday:

"The discovery sought by Mr. Lerner is unrelated to the
recommendations made by the Special Master concerning Mr. Lerner in the report of September
6, 2013."

My personal, non-attorney reading and understanding of the court's statement is that Lerner can't discover the documents from Juneau because the court, for some reason, doesn't find them relevant to Lerner's defense against the recommendations against him in the 9/6/13 Freeh Report.

But, I don't find anything saying Freeh is to ignore his original and supplemental mandates from the court to investigate, expose and conquer all evil and corruption at the DHECC and CAO.

Your letter and exhibits sent to Freeh seem to fit right up his alley.

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

Kevin...can you send me some of what you're smokin' brah? :)

Let's not kid ourselves. The game is rigged...the fix is in...the kaboosh is kaboshed...

Freeh was never anything more than a stalking horse. Let's be fo' true here.

Kevin said...

Jason:

"Let's not kid ourselves. The game is rigged...the fix is in...the kaboosh is kaboshed...

That's something a lot of local lawyers were saying back on May 5, 2010. Most of those I know just sucked it up as a fact of life in the Louisiana class action legal community. Several also became blocks in some PSC pyramids.

Be different. Don't suck it up and don't move on.

For lots of reasons, I don't believe Freeh is a stalking horse. For that to be true, I think you have to believe that (1) the "recommendations" and allegations by Freeh (some of which he may have passed on to the federal authorities) will be withdrawn, or found by the court to be completely baseless and without merit, thus clearing the names of those maligned; and, (2) BP is going to step up and pay some crazy money to Sutton, Reitano, Lerner, Andry, and maybe even Duval.

They, their spawn, their ancestors, and their pets would all be sworn to confidentiality and secrecy and forbidden from talking and writing about anything and everything they ever saw, heard, said, or smelled and that has any thing to do with the DHECC, the CAO, the litigation, BP, oil and gasoline, strippers, New Orleans, etc.

Otherwise, how can they ever put to rest the issues of the expedited claims and all other collateral damage from the outfall of the Freeh investigation?

IMHO, if BP loses at the 5th Circuit and SCOTUS in its bid to reverse Juneau's interpretation of the settlement formula, then Freeh is done running the DHECC within 30 days of the date the last decision comes down. Nobody will be able to stop payments for any reason except for incompleteness of documentation or possibly "fraud" which is going to have a much narrower meaning by then.

I read Sutton's comments about how there is no criminal or ethical investigation into Christine's alleged conduct. And, then I read where she has the answers to the questions we should all be asking.

I'm ready to ask.

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

In any of those scenarios....how will justice be served? I don't see it. I don't understand how you think any of the issues I've raised on the blog will go anywhere past the court of public opinion.

I think this whole thing is rigged from the top down...Louisiana truly lives up to its reputation. When the Louisiana judiciary is obstructing justice with a gavel, I'm not sure where you turn, Kevin? Where do you turn?

As the anon said a couple of weeks ago....the guys running the show are hiding behind the robe and don't see how it's possible to expose them.

Kevin said...


Faith, is my answer.

You're selling yourself short. Freeh is looking into the claims in your letter, if for no other reason than it's his mandate from the court to investigate EXACTLY the kind of information you provided, and he and his staff can bill for it.

Christine Reitano and Sutton could submit affidavits in support of your claims. Surely they know right off the top of their heads whether or not the "sampling" was a real thing or not.

Everything we're discussing involves a federal court of law and attorneys. So, it's a given that it's going to take additional attorneys to assist with and address the problem.

If Sutton and Reitano have knowledge of unethical conduct by other lawyers, they are obligated to report it.

I keep coming back to this because it seems so basic to me, and it seems to be the single-most abused part of the code of ethical conduct.

Sutton said...

C'mon Kevin.
Louis Freeh had information that Pat Juneau asked me to expedite the claim of his friend's son. Did he ask me about it in my deposition? No.
Louis Freeh had information that Pat Juneau asked me to explain to his friend how to file a claim that he otherwise would not have filed. Did he ask me about that? No.
He had information that I was required to regularly meet with PSC lawyers and help them get claims paid. Any questions about that? Nope.
How about when I had to meet with major objectors and assist them in getting claims paid? Nada.
Did you see anything from the judge when I put all of that in a brief? Did the judge disallow the page 60 firm from continuing to represent claimants?
The judge, Juneau and the PSC only care about the settlement being maintained. Hopefully for different reasons, but I am beginning to doubt that. Freeh only cares about Freeh. He is not bright enough for the credit you give him.

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

Faith?

kudos brutha...

Anonymous said...

Don't be shocked that the system is corrupt. Louisiana judiciary, federal judiciary, it does not matter. They are driven by the good ole boys club and that is just the nature of the game. There is nothing any of us can do. I have been working to expose corruption across all levels of the judiciary in this state for years. I have noted that this corruption does cross to the federal side too after being provided documents showing judges acting on behalf of their buddies. No one will do anything about it.

Anonymous said...

Just keep up the good work. Your journalism is well researched and to the point. The things you are reporting surprise no one.

Anonymous said...

Aside from potentially explaining/excusing Sutton, et al's conduct and how his/their actions (or inactions) regarding the Thonn claim and related matters were not out of the ordinary, hidden, or otherwise improper, I'm not sure what Judge Barbier is supposed to do about the "sampling" issue even if he were inclined to do something about it. Think about it for a second,....let's look at the situation from two different scenarios: (1) one where BP was involved in discussions with Juneau and the PSC about the need for a sample of claims and that it never objected to the sample being created by letting the PSC firms select claims that they filed for their private clients, and (2) one where BP had discussions with Juneau and the PSC about the sample, but they had no idea it would be created by the PSC or involve their private clients. Under scenario one, although the fact pattern may suggest a potential ethical violation related to the PSC favoring their own private clients over other class members, I don't see how Barbier could punish the claimants, PSC members or Juneau for for handling the sample that way if all relevant parties were involved in the discussion and no party objected to that approach. The attorney disciplinary board might have some interest in investigating the breach of loyalty part, but I don't see how the judge can step in and do anything about it if scenario one is accurate. An action taken before the stay can't become invalid simply because an appeal later changed the calculation method if the action was valid when originally taken before the appeal was even filed. Under scenario number two Barbier may have more room to work since BP wasn't made aware of the method of selecting the sample, but he still doesn't have very many good options. In that case, the PSC may have overstepped and perhaps Juneau did as well by not clearly informing BP about the method, but what remedy should Barbier provide? If the PSC convinced Juneau to do something he shouldn't have done, but it didn't change the result of the claim review or calculation (under the rules in place at the time), then can he now order the claims re-evaluated, or claw-back money paid under a calculation that was correct under the rules in place at the time, or order the PSC to just give up its fees on the claims even though the court's representative (Juneau) knew about and approved of them selecting the sample, or order that BP is entitled to another fairness hearing because the sample somehow tainted the original proceeding despite the "sample" never being discussed during the hearing or the briefs filed by the parties prior to and following the hearing? I think there may be good cause for a serious ethics investigation in that case, but If he did try to claw back the claims, what did the claimant do to deserve that, and on what grounds would he change the result of the review? If he instead wanted to just go after the PSC's fees, how can he do that if everything they did was with the blessing of the court's official representative and the person the judge (at the parties' request) appointed to determine how to approach questions and issues related to claims processing? I think just about all he could do is jump Juneau's ass for exercising poor judgment and allowing the PSC to "randomly" select a sample or claims that would absolutely NOT be considered "random" or "representative" by any statistician in the country. I don't see how they could nail the PSC for this unless they can show a clear effort by both Juneau and the PSC to keep BP out of the loop and hide the fact that this was really just about getting PSC claims paid faster.

Anonymous said...

I just don't see an clear path forward without a lot more evidence of wrongdoing on the PSC's and/or Juneau's part. Do you? What would you propose he do about all of this depending on how much (or little) BP knew about it? I assume if BP knew nothing about it, they will say so loud and clear in a brief I would expect to be filed very soon considering how quickly they've jumped on similar allegations in the past. If you were Barbier, and assume you honestly want to address the allegations, what would you do?

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

First the PSC apologists, now the Barbier...nice.

Here's what he does...he tells the Special Master to fucking investigate the issues...he tells him to do his fucking job. And he releases the information Freeh acquires to the public to let them know what has happened.

If it found the PSC has committed the transgressions they're being accused of....they are removed from class counsel and possibly disbarred or as Freeh suggested with others, criminal charges are brought against them.

Don't tell me there's nothing poor Barbier can do...what a load of shit that is.

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

" that way if all relevant parties were involved in the discussion and no party objected to that approach."

They weren't....period.

", but he still doesn't have very many good options."

He's a goddamn federal judge....he has nothing but options. His immediate option is the dude he hired to find these issues...you know....the fucking guy making all the money? Yeah...that guy.

" if everything they did was with the blessing of the court's official representative and the person the judge"

If that is the case...charges need to brought up against Barbier. Either way...THERE IS NO LEGAL DOCUMENTATION REGARDING THE SAMPLING PROGRAM....repeat that until you get it. Barbier, at the least, should confirm or deny if he approved these actions. If he was unaware...Juneau should be fired immediately and criminal charges should be brought up against the PSC members involved.

Save the Barbier apologist bullshit....really...I don't want to hear it. He is just as guilty as the PSC members if he is helping to cover this up....even more considering his responsibility and position.

He can't do anything...what an epic of load of shit that is.

Kevin said...

Sutton:

"The judge, Juneau and the PSC only care about the settlement being maintained."

Agree 1000%! It's daunting.

The information you describe from your memoranda to the court seems to be more closely related to the expedited claims than that of the AndryLerner crew. Have you given thought to asking for the same discovery?

I don't mean to pour salt. If Freeh did have all the evidence you describe, and if he is as dim as you describe him, then maybe that's why he didn't ask those questions at your deposition?

Let's start over:

I'm pretty sure a Special Master is not supposed to lie.

Is there anything specific in Pat Juneau's response to the AZ that you can say is an unequivocal lie. If so, what?


Anonymous(es):

Denying discovery into the issues you raise sure didn't help matters. Would you agree we don't have all the facts needed to determine what truly happened, and then the level of harm, if any, to class members, the proceedings, the judiciary, the practice of law?

Maybe this is a legal scenario/question you could answer, if you're an attorney. If not, then maybe the court could answer this for everyone's benefit.

My opinion: People on the coast had legitimate LARGE claims that needed expediting, and that could have been expedited. PSC cousins with a business in Port Allen should wait in line, just like the Class Reps, until the settlement is final after all right to appeal are exhausted.

Basis for my opinion: Fayard once told me and several others that class counsel and PSC members appointed by the court could not be paid attorney's fees from a common fund before the settlement became final, except in very limited circumstances, and then only with a very specific order from the court. I'm not a lawyer. Maybe that has changed since 2003. Maybe he was just bullshitting a bunch of less resourceful attorneys and me, his paralegal.

But, his comments may have been true and that might explain why there is a Common Benefit Fee Fund as part of the settlement. Isn't it correct the fees are being set aside in essentially an escrow acccount until a petition for fees and costs is submitted by the class counsel and common benefit attorneys and approved by the court?

When it was exclusively their position on the PSC that caused their and their firms clients' claims to be expedited, do you think that, if they and their firms received fees from the Economic Benefit Fund (in addition to the 6% holdback fees paid by BP) without an order from the court, would that be improper. Can the federal court can take disciplinary action against them without any involvement of the Louisiana Office of Disciplinary Counsel?

There are court orders in the record allowing the repayment of allocation advances and expenses submitted by those attorneys. But, I haven't been able to locate ANY order allowing those attorneys and their firms to get around that fee abstinence by enrolling their private clients in a "sampling program."



Anonymous said...

"sampling" never existed. It was made up in hindsight. That is easy enough to prove. Not only was it never referred to in minutes, ect., if a "sample" was needed, why did they "sample" BEL, Seafood and Coastal claims when there were already more than enough payable. Why not "sample" IEL, Subsistence or Wetlands. Because that was not where the money was. Period.
Expediting did exist, for a number of reasons. Some discussed here, some not. Whether those reasons were legitimate should be the objective of an open, transparent investigation. apparently that is not going to happen. The important question is Why?
The Thonn claim was never alleged to have been expedited and no one was ever accused of trying to expedite it. The Andry Law Firm claim was not expedited. The evidence produced by the SM shows that it was improperly DELAYED for 4 months. Sutton was accused of checking on the status of that claim. There are no accusations that any Andry Lerner claims were ever expedited.
Apples to Apples please?

Dambala - Jason Brad Berry said...

"Can the federal court can take disciplinary action against them without any involvement of the Louisiana Office of Disciplinary Counsel?"

That and the MDL board? Can anyone answer that?

The DOJ can, the FBI can....where are they?

Kevin said...


Anonymous said...

"sampling" never existed. It was made up in hindsight. That is easy enough to prove. ..."

"Sampling" is the official reason provided by a federal court special master in response to a media story and inquiry.

Other than your summary of the BEL claims, etc., what other proof exists that "sampling never existed?"

Is anybody with actual knowledge willing to provide sworn affidavits that "sampling" is a lie? If so, Jason knows how to contact me. With affidavits, I would pursue this.

Sutton:

Re: my earlier reply - maybe you could file a motion seeking discovery and attach the actual written discovery to your motion, complete with detailed RFPs for documents you know exist, and even more detailed RFAs for facts you know to be true?

Be a light for those in the dark.

Anonymous said...

"Is anybody with actual knowledge willing to provide sworn affidavits that "sampling" is a lie?"

How do you prove a negative. Look at all of the emails, meeting minutes, court records,ECT. See if the word sample was ever used. Why do you think the judge denied Lerner's motion. What legitimate reason is there for the public not to know how a sample of claims was processed for the fairness hearing. Nothing wrong with that. Except it didn't exist. It was expediting claims for the PSC and the squeaky wheels. There is a reason to hide that.

Anonymous said...

Anon,....you said, ""sampling" never existed. It was made up in hindsight. That is easy enough to prove. " Jason, you seem to voice similar sentiments. I'm with Kevin on this, where is the beef? I can't figure your position out Jason. Do you believe, like Anon, that there never was a "sample", or is it your position that what they did (allow PSC members to select their own claims) simply doesn't constitute "sampling" because it results in an invalid/useless sample? I'm 100% with you if the latter is your position, because I deal with statistical sampling on a daily basis in my practice and know for certain that whatever claims were selected, they were selected in a way that is not random, representative, or statistically valid. On the other hand, if your position is like the other anon's (that the whole "sampling" story was made up after the fact), then I would suggest even more research into the issue because I'm pretty sure that theory is dead wrong, and easily proven to be. Here's why I say that: I'm not a member of the PSC and am more or less just a nobody lawyer in this litigation who just happened to file some claim for my clients, YET, despite that, I still knew about the "sampling"/expediting of a limited number of claims WELL BEFORE the fairness hearing. I was told about it by my law firm's officially assigned "contact" at Brown Greer and I believe Juneau even issued something in writing mentioning it. Whatever the case, this was no secret. Granted, I didn't know they were selecting claims by allowing the PSC to pick some if their own client's claims, but I certainly heard about the sampling process. This was explained to us numerous times when we would raise questions about why a particular claim seemed to be stuck in the process and should have already entered the review stage. Our contact would basically say, "well, the general rule is that claims are reviewed in the order received, however,...the CAO also needs to expedite a sample of newly filed claims and certain types of claims in order for the parties and the court to have an accurate picture of all of the claims." I'm paraphrasing, obviously, but that's what we were told and is why I don't think this was quite as hidden as you seem to believe. Regardless, you also seem to think that nobody at BP was made aware of this, but you lack evidence of that too. I'm aware that BP gave you a response that CAN BE interpreted as a half-hearted denial of knowledge about the sampling, but it's nowhere remotely close to being as air tight as you think. Either they, or Juneau is lying to you,.....but only Juneau has communicated his story to the court. Let's see if BP will file something flat out claiming that they weren't made aware of hrs sampling process. Maybe they will, maybe they won't, but neither you nor I knows for sure. That much is crystal clear.

Anonymous said...

"If that is the case...charges need to brought up against Barbier. Either way...THERE IS NO LEGAL DOCUMENTATION REGARDING THE SAMPLING PROGRAM....repeat that until you get it. Barbier, at the least, should confirm or deny if he approved these actions. If he was unaware...Juneau should be fired immediately and criminal charges should be brought up against the PSC members involved."

Ok, Jason, I'll bite. Under this fact pattern, where everything was done with either (1) Barbier's and Juneau's knowledge, or (2) just Juneau's knowledge, what crime, EXACTLY, do you think was committed? UNDER THAT FACT PATTERN, I doubt very seriously that you can intelligently argue that any crime at all was committed, but I'm interested to see what crime you are thinking of because you obviously think this is such overt corruption that someone needs to go to jail. I'd like to see how dumb you think the lawyers on the PSC really are. They would be true fools to concoct a scheme like this that only benefits themselves and yet requires the participation of so many unrelated third parties with supervisory control over different aspects of the process (Juneau, his staff, BG, PWC, P&N, GCG, etc). I don't doubt for a second that they did something completely self serving by using their own claims for the sample, but your theory as I understand it requires a conspiracy between the PSC, Juneau, and the contractors so broad in scope that only an idiot would think they could get away with it. If they weren't bribing Juneau, or otherwise improperly influencing him, then you would have a crime on your hands, but without something like that, this is a dead end story mainly characterized by misunderstandings and unproven assumptions on your part. Those emails don't prove what you think they prove. Sorry, but your bias is interfering with your judgement if that's all you've got to support your narrative.

Anonymous said...

"Would you agree we don't have all the facts needed to determine what truly happened, and then the level of harm, if any, to class members, the proceedings, the judiciary, the practice of law?"

Yes, I agree with that statement wholeheartedly and that lack of knowledge pretty much forms the basis of my entire disagreement with Jason on the issue. He suspects a lot, but can't prove much at all. He has some emails that MIGHT support his conclusion, but they aren't even close to definitive. He also has a response from BP where they half assed acknowledge the discussions with Juneau but stop short of BOTH (1) mentioning whether those discussions covered the "sampling" process, AND (2) claiming that they were not made aware that the PSC would be selecting some claims for expediting as part of a "sample" or otherwise. They DID NOT outright deny being told about it like Jason says they did. I can read too, and they simply did not deny being told about it. They just didn't. I don't care how many times Jason swears that they did. They didn't. They said they were concerned about so,e things in the emails, but I would rather wait on a definitive denial from them in a court filing. Until they do, only Juneau and the PSC have told their side of the story. I say Barbier should have allowed the discovery, but I'm not lynching anyone until I hear from all sides,...which hasn't happened.

Kevin said...


Anonymous said...

"Anon,....you said, ""sampling" never existed. It was made up in hindsight. That is easy enough to prove. " Jason, you seem to voice similar sentiments. I'm with Kevin on this, where is the beef?"

My point is not "where's the beef." In fact, my point is to the other extreme.

Jason can speak for himself.

I'd ask that you publicly produce every shred of evidence you have about sampling and expediting claims for ANY reason, including phone records for the calls you had with your contact at Brown & Greer.

Anonymous said...

Once again, all of you are confusing"sampling" and "expediting". Just like Juneau and the PSC wanted.
There was no sampling. That word wasn't even used. There was expediting. We all know that. It has been admitted. The question is why claims were expedited. There are legitimate reasons and illegitimate reasons.
If it was to get samples for the fairness hearing then they should be transparent and come forward with that evidence. That may very well be a legitimate reason. If they do not, it is reasonable to assume they have something to hide.
If expediting was done for other reasons, there should be a full investigation. Those reasons may be illegitimate. Freeh accused Sutton of attempting to expedite a claim and recommended that he not be allowed to represent claimants. If the PSC expedited claims for an illegitimate reason, they should get the same treatment.
So, was the expediting legitimate or not. Only full disclosure can give us the answer.

Anonymous said...

"I'd ask that you publicly produce every shred of evidence you have about sampling and expediting claims for ANY reason, including phone records for the calls you had with your contact at Brown & Greer."

Why would I take time out of my day to do that? I would have ZERO chance of identifying which of dozens and dozens of calls I had with my law firm contacts (plural, I had several), involved talk of the sampling/expediting thing. Zero chance. If you ask nicely I might dig around my old emails abs see if I can find any referencing it, but I don't know if they exist. I just don't recall exactly how I knew about it, but Im certain I knew about it before the fairness hearing.

Kevin said...


Anonymous said...

"Why would I take time out of my day to do that?"

To help demonstrate something you, an attorney, have taken the time out of your day to come here and say happened and/or exists. We are pursuing the truth and only the truth. You could help with that?

"I would have ZERO chance of identifying which of dozens and dozens of calls I had with my law firm contacts (plural, I had several), involved talk of the sampling/expediting thing."

I understand. How about the name of your firm contact at Brown & Greer? Can you provide that information? I'm betting B&G has a record of each and every call from you, and maybe we can ge them to comment.

"If you ask nicely I might dig around my old emails abs see if I can find any referencing it, but I don't know if they exist."

Please look around your emails to see if you can find anything referencing claims sampling or expediting?