Folks our blogging on John Houghtaling, aka Magnum J.D. and his association with Kevin Costner has been pure gold for us and literally opened the floodgates for information as my inbox has received quite the workout on the subject of lil’ ol Magnum and more. Let’s begin with Val Bracy at Fox 8 who explores the inherent conflict of interest involving a law firm which is copiously advertising for oil spill clients to sue BP while the managing partner of the same firm is selling BP Costner’s Oil-Water separating machines:
Fox 8 Legal Analyst Joe Rasapnti says the situation is unusual.
“He has a business relationship with BP and he needs to disclose that to any prospective client to let them know ‘I’m doing business with these folks even though I’m suing them on your behalf,'” said Raspanti.
I can imagine Magnum’s partners aren’t very happy about all this, especially since it very well may take money out of their pockets due to lost spill business while Magnum cashes in with Costner:
Houghtaling has taken a leave of absence.
It’s not clear whether he will be paid during the leave.
Law firm partners typically make money from every case the firm handles.
Indeed they do and that would include DA Paul Connick but that is another post. I for one am gratified to see one local media outlet get this story right instead of being blinded by Costner’s star power as have the national outlets and unfortunately more than one local pundit. You go Val!
Speaking of being blinded, investing $20 million dollars in technology 17 years ago which never paid off certainly has blinded Costner to the person he jumped in bed with. Turns out Magnum was planning a multi-pronged PR offensive against BP while he was trying to make them to buy Costner’s machine and predictably he is accused of screwing his partners in very short order as I introduce the Slabbed Nation to the case of Levy v The Will to Drill, LLC, John Houghtalng et al filed in the 24th Judicial District in Jefferson Parish.
The case involves the formation of a LLC to make a movie about the spill, no doubt to help drive spill related litigation business over to Houghtaling’s firm. At issue are financial guarantees Houghtaling made his prospective partners in writing that he then refused to honor. As is Houghtaling’s wont, at the first sign of trouble he threatens to sue Levy, “dragging his ass before a CDC judge and jury”. In response Levy sued to get his money back, such suit I’ve embedded for the consideration of the Slabbed Nation courtesy of Scribd:
[scribd id=33183523 key=key-62uocudn9tv34pawcpy mode=list]
We have more coming on Mr Houghtaling and his firm as we finally introduce legendary trial lawyer Wendell Gauthier’s once storied firm to the Jefferson Parish corruption woodpile.