USA asks for 10-day extension on Moultrie response

Citing time spent in court and the time required to obtain information from expert witness living out-of-state, the USA filed two motions – one related to expert witnesses and the other to sever defendants – and requested a 10-day extension of time to respond to those filed by Moultrie’s defense.

By the time I went back to pull the documents for posting, the USA had submitted notice of appearance for an additional attorney, Curtis Ivy, Jr.

Given the time I’ve spent pulling and reading the motions and exhibits filed yesterday, I can only imagine the manpower required to read and respond – and with more motions expected – good move!

Will Provost Umphrey be the new sheriff in town?

Provost Umphrey’s interest in the Rigsby sister’s qui tam case signals the possibility of good news for all parties in Katrina policyholder cases against State Farm. Anita Lee has the story for the Sun Herald, the Motion filed by Provost Umphrey and State Farm’s short-sighted response.

The Texas Law Firm now representing former Scruggs Katrina Group clients also wants to consider taking on a whistle-blower lawsuit for two former insurance adjusters who handled State Farm claims, but not without a federal judge’s permission.

The Provost Umphrey Law Firm is asking the U.S. District Court for “leave to discuss and possibly undertake representation” of Ocean Springs sisters Cori and Kerri Rigsby, inaccurately referred to in the motion as “Kelli.”

Scruggs Katrina Group attorneys and all law firms previously associated with them on Katrina lawsuits against State Farm have been disqualified from those cases.

Strategically, this is a win-win proposition for all concerned Continue reading “Will Provost Umphrey be the new sheriff in town?”

Scruggs comes to the Rigsbys' rescue

In court filings today, Scruggs and Scruggs Law Firm moved the court to release the security to satisfy the civil contempt charges.

In order to prevent the accumulation of any additional interest on the judgment, without waiver of the pending appeals and solely to pay the civil contempt sanction awarded in this action, Scruggs requests that the Court direct the Clerk to release to Renfroe the amount of $65,000, plus the interest having already accrued at the interest rate of 2.15% per year (as set out by this Court in the June 27, 2008 Order) from the date of the judgment until today, and release the remainder of the funds back to the Bainbridge, Mims, Rogers & Smith, LLP Trust Account.

But they are not waiving their right to appeal nor their right to recover the money if he wins on appeal.

Although Scruggs will comply with the Court’s order that the civil contempt judgment be satisfied immediately, Scruggs expressly reserves the right to prosecute its pending appeals of the civil contempt judgment to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, and does not waive any of its defenses. See, e.g., Graddick v. Newman, 453 U.S. 928, 945 n.1 (1981) (“Since property transferred or money paid involuntarily pursuant to a judgment can be recovered, execution of the lower court’s
judgment pending appeal normally does not render the case moot. These cases represent merely a particularization of the rule that issuance of a court’s mandate or obedience to its judgment does not bar timely appellate review.”); County of Dakota v. Glidden, 113 U.S. 222, 224-25 (1885) (“There can be no question that a debtor against whom a judgment for money is recovered, may pay that judgment, and bring a writ of error to reverse it, and if reversed can recover back his money.”); Ferrell v. Trailmobile, Inc., 223 F.2d 697, 698 (5th Cir. 1955) (“We think that the rule has long been established in the federal courts that payment of a judgment, of itself, does not cut off the payor’s right of appeal.”).

Since this release of the money would satisfy the contempt sanctions, I would think that the Rigsbys are off the hook from the court’s latest order on the matter.

Unless the judgment is paid within fourteen (14) days, the court will consider denying
defendants’ motions for summary judgment as a sanction.

Good job, Mr. Scruggs! Good job!

Moultrie files truckload of motions

Grab your reading glasses and take a look at what Moultrie’s defense filed yesterday. I’ve listed the four motions on USA v Moultrie under Legal on the left sidebar.

The “unnamed public official” figures prominently in this latest round of filings – a good thing Carothers is available as there’s a lot of work to be done.

  • Motion to Dismiss Count 1 of the Indictment
  • Motion to Require Heightened Standard.
  • Motion for Juror Questionnaire.
  • Motion to Exclude Evidence of Prior Acts

Moultrie’s attorney, Tom Freeland, has done an excellent job – and killed a couple of trees with the Exhibits that we’ll post as time permits during the day.

Christmas in July? Biggers cuts Carothers sentence again!

Patsy Brumfield’s story posted to the Daily Journal on-line late today – but I’m certain not too late for Sean Carothers to welcome Judge Biggers decked out in a Santa Suit delivering a good news Order reducing Carothers’ sentence to time served.

Sean Carothers will be free even earlier from federal prison to help the government prosecute others accused in the Mississippi beef plant scandal.

Wednesday, U.S. Senior Judge Neal Biggers Jr. changed an earlier order to reduce Carothers’ 21-month sentence to time served, plus 90 days on house arrest.

Monday, Biggers reduced his sentence to 12 months and a day after U.S. Attorney Jim Greenlee asked for Carothers’ early release to help in preparing its case against three Georgia executives and their companies. They are accused in another scheme to defraud the state of Mississippi and others related to the defunct beef processing plant.

It was unclear about why he revised his order. Continue reading “Christmas in July? Biggers cuts Carothers sentence again!”