Add another “D” to the State Farm – Renfroe delay-deny-deceive strategy – distract – and give some of the credit to Judge Acker for his “free legal advice”.
Worked like a charm on the test run that resulted in Judge Senter disqualifying the Rigsby sisters’s qui tam counsel, the sisters as witnesses in policy holder cases and made the copied documents inadmissible as evidence in those cases as well.
The distract component is a pyramid scheme that takes a truth gleaned from a deposition at the bottom and colors it with questions in subsequent depositions until it a big fat lie with just enough truth to appear credible when translated into urban legends like “trailer Todd” – legends with little regard for the truth at the bottom.
Behind the scene at SLABBED, we’ve been busily dissecting depositions searching for the truths at the bottom of the pyramids that led to Judge Senter to decide to disqualify the Rigsby sisters as witnesses in McIntosh and other policy holder cases against State Farm and rule the documents they copied were inadmissible as evidence in these cases.
It is apparent to me, from my review of the deposition testimony of the Rigsby sisters, that there was no legitimate reason for these payments and that the “consulting” work that ostensibly justified these payments was a sham.
Even if this were not the case, the performance of legitimate work that is closely related to a matter in litigation cannot justify an attorney’s payment of a substantial sum of money to a non-expert material witness.
The only question I’ve had that’s been delaying this bellesouth/nowdy tag team post is where to start – and belle just took care of that when she posted Do not discuss, do not pay.
One of the pyramids of distraction promoted is that the Rigsby sisters used a list of SKG clients when deciding the claim holder files they would copy – an overlapping pyramid (lie) is that their contract with Scruggs was compensation for copying files from the SKG list.
Kerri’s testimony quoted by belle proves otherwise – picking up from there, Kerri’s testimony explains what came next. (questions in ital were asked by attorney taking her deposition)
And what I’m trying to determine now is how you decided on the criteria of what documents you would download and print.
Okay. All right. We, again, wanted to help as many people as possible. We felt the focus was from the spreadsheet. Therefore, we knew that the people that would be looking at what we copied would need to be able to reference something. You know, they’re not adjusters. This is not their field. So we thought we needed to give them something to go by.
So we printed out the activity log, the payment sheet, anything related tot he claim that would help them investigate it. Mainly, the engineering payments. So that when we turned the documents over, the authorities would know which claims had duplicate engineering reports and they could, if nothing else — because we didn’t figure State Farm would have them anymore. They could go to the engineering firms and subpoena or investigate because — to determine — you know, they could — they could verify that the reports had been changed. They had also participated in fraudulent activity.
So we wanted, you know, there to be a tracking point where, okay, this claim had duplicate engineering reports and these were the engineers. So they would have a place to investigate is what we were trying to give them.
Who did you anticipate would be doing the investigation?
We anticipated that there would be a law enforcement of some sort.
Okay. And those are the authorities that you mentioned earlier?
When you kept that set, that third set of copies, did you intend that they or understand that they might be used to benefit Mr. Scrugggs’ other clients?
Yes. And that was — I copied them so they would benefit the policyholders. I didn’t care whose clients they were. I wanted to prove — I wanted it to be shown if there — whatever fraud there was out there, I wanted it investigated and shown. I didn’t care who did it. (emphasis added)
You didn’t care if it was a governmental investigator or a third party who was doing it to benefit another set of clients?
I just wanted it exposed. I wanted the people helped. They had been wronged, and it was time that they had a chance to know the truth.
Backing up to the testimony in the preceding section of the deposition further provides some insight about the relationship with Scruggs.
Had you ever met Mr. Scruggs prior to that February meeting?
No, I had not.
Do you recall what day in February you met with him, you first met with him.
Was it closer to March?
I believe so. I remember a lot of boxes so that was the time around when I was moving to my sisters…
I remember showing him some documents, and I’m sure he — I gave him some documents, but I don’t know that — it seemed like it was — the only document that I really wanted him to have that was real important that he have was the first document that I — that I found.
That would be the engineering report with the sticky note on it.
Did you give him a copy of that document and you kept a copy or did he take the only copy you had?
I think I gave him my copy. I — yeah. I think I gave him my copy. I just wanted it away from — you know, just take it, and do something with it….
With that said, here’s something to ponder. Once the Rigsby sisters had knowledge of the fraud, they had to choose between becoming co-conspirators or whistle-blowers.
Once they met Scruggs they understood their options, made the right choice, and lost their jobs.
Either he had an expert witness – experienced adjusters capable of detecting fraud – or all other adjusters working for State Farm via Renfroe are co-conspirators.
Their contractual relationship with Scruggs was both legal and ethical – and Judge Senter acknowledged such a relationship could exist in his order disqualifying the two Missouri firms.
…and I will assume without deciding that such an arrangement is at least theoretically possible.
As it turned out, however, it was a bad business decision. When he couldn’t provide the work and he was still obligated to pay them – but that’s not a sham, it’s what the law required him to do.