BOSTON - It is within a trial court's province to provide information on the fallibility of eyewitness identifications through jury instructions rather than through dueling experts, a First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held July 27 in a narcotics case (United States of America v. Daquawn Jones, No. 10-2363, 1st Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15631).
BROOKLYN, N.Y. - A former New York City police detective who says he was forced to resign due to harassment by supervisors and coworkers after he complained to internal affairs that a fellow detective told him to falsely accept blame for a botched homicide investigation can proceed with his claim that his right to free speech was violated, a New York federal judge held July 31 (James Griffin v. The City of New York, et al., No. 10-cv-2592, E.D. N.Y.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 106208).
PHILADELPHIA - A company that provided helicopter services failed to allege direct evidence or "plus factors" sufficient to overcome its competitors' motion for summary judgment on the company's claim that the defendants conspired to fix the price of helicopter services rates for offshore oil and gas industries in violation of the Sherman Act, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed July 27 in an unpublished opinion (Superior Offshore International, Inc. v. Bristow Group, Inc., et al., Superior Offshore International, Inc. v. Bristow Group, Inc., et al., No. 11-3010, 3rd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15539).
SEATTLE - In reversing a lower court, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 30 held that a Medicare Appeals Council reasonably concluded that studies failed to show that a piece of durable medical equipment used to treat osteoarthritis of the knee was effective at regenerating cartilage. Also, because the court did not consider the issue, the appeals court remanded the case for determination of whether the supplier of the device was entitled to the benefits of any of Medicare's "limited liability" provisions (International Rehabilitative Science Inc. v. Kathleen Sebelius, et al, No. 11-35254, 9th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15671).
INDIANAPOLIS - An Indiana Court of Appeals panel on July 30 found that a lawsuit brought under Indiana's Environmental Legal Action (ELA) statutes that sought contribution toward remediation of tetrachloroethene (PCE) and trichloroethene (TCE) contamination at the former site of a self-service dry-cleaning facility was untimely because the claim was subject to a six-year statute of limitations (The Peniel Group Inc., et al. v. Elizabeth Bannon, et al., No. 49A02-1201-PL-42, Ind. App.; 2012 Ind. App. LEXIS 360).
LOS ANGELES - Shareholders could not show that directors in a company showed bad faith regarding the company's violations of immigration laws, a federal judge in California said July 31, dismissing the shareholders' derivative lawsuit for failure to show that presuit demand upon the board would have been futile (In re American Apparel, Inc. Shareholder Derivative Litigation, No. 10-cv-06576, C.D. Calif.). View related prior history, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 47026.
TRENTON, N.J. - A unanimous New Jersey Superior Court Appellate Division panel issued an opinion July 30 affirming the award of workers' compensation benefits to a refinery worker over the objections of the employer, who alleged that the evidence does not support the conclusions of the judge of compensations (Retha Johnson v. ExxonMobil Chemical Co. No. A-0665-10T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2012 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1814).
CAMDEN, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on July 31 denied a plaintiff's motion to reconsider the dismissal of a putative class action seeking the return of money paid to Medicare after Medicare demanded reimbursement of a discounted portion of medical costs it paid on behalf of the plaintiff from a lump-sum tort settlement the plaintiff received (Joseph B. Mason v. Kathleen Sebelius, et al., No. 11-2370, D. N.J.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 106522).
CHICAGO - The trustee in the Chapter 7 bankruptcy case of Peregrine Financial Group Inc. on July 31 moved in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois for authority to subpoena various financial institutions that did business with Peregrine prior to its bankruptcy filing (In Re: Peregrine Financial Group Inc., No. 12-27488, Chapter 7, N.D. Ill. Bkcy.).
NEW YORK - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 11 case of Eastman Kodak Co. on Aug. 1 ruled that Kodak could sell two of its patents related to digital imaging, concluding that the statute of limitations had run out on Apple Inc.'s right to assert ownership. Other patents remain disputed, but the judge said Kodak could update the record to assert its ownership rights (Eastman Kodak Company v. Apple Inc., et al. (In Re: Eastman Kodak Company), No. 12-10202, Adv. No. 12-01720, Chapter 11, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
WILMINGTON, Del. - Bankrupt solar energy company Solyndra LLC, which received a $535 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) before filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, on July 27 filed its plan of reorganization, which would repay little, if any, of the DOE loan (In Re: Solyndra LLC, No. 11-12799, Chapter 11, D. Del. Bkcy.).
LAS VEGAS - A debt collection company sufficiently alleged an implied contract with an insurer that provided it with services supporting its collections activities, a Nevada federal judge ruled July 30, denying a motion to dismiss breach of contract and bad faith claims against the insurer (Nevada Association Services Inc. v. First American Title Insurance Co., et al., No. 2:11-cv-02015, D. Nev.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 105466).
NEW YORK - The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding of Residential Capital LLC (Res Cap) on July 31 approved expanding the scope of the investigation being conducted by the U.S. trustee's examiner pertaining to the events that led to the financial company's bankruptcy (In Re: Residential Capital LLC, No. 12-12020, Chapter 11, S.D. N.Y. Bkcy.).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 31 vacated a portion of a Texas federal district court's decision that required parties to arbitrate a dispute over contracts related to offshore oil drilling before five arbitrators, remanding the case so that the district court can enter an order appointing three arbitrators, which was required by the agreement between parties (BP Exploration Libya Limited v. ExxonMobil Libya Limited, et al., No. 11-20547, 5th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15706).
DENVER - A 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 27 upheld a federal judge in Wyoming's post-judgment ruling ordering a defendant company in a breach of contract suit to pay $58,361.51 in attorney fees as a sanction for discovery misconduct after finding that even though counsel for the plaintiff was working for a fixed fee, the defendant's misconduct frustrated the discovery process and frustrated resolution of the case (Centennial Archaeology Inc. v. AECOM Inc., No. 11-8000, 10th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15598).
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A dosimetry calibration laboratory that was denied reaccreditation by the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) survived the AAPM's motion for summary judgment on the laboratory's claim that AAPM conspired to orchestrate a concerted refusal to deal with the laboratory, a federal judge in Tennessee ruled July 26 (K & S Associates, Inc. v. American Association of Physicists in Medicine, No. 3:09-1108, M.D. Tenn.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104238).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 30 affirmed a lower federal court's ruling that claimants are not entitled to any additional benefits under a policy's directors and officers' coverage provisions because the insurer's payment of $25,000 for their underlying defense costs in a property sale dispute fully satisfies its contractual obligations (Holy Ghost Carpatho-Russian Greek Catholic (Orthodox) Church, et al. v. Church Mutual Insurance Company, No. 11-4363, 3rd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15683).
ALEXANDRIA, La. - A Louisiana federal judge on July 26 agreed with a magistrate judge that the government's motion to dismiss a case challenging a provision contained in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), 111 P.L. 148, that requires all health plans to provide preventive services for free, including those for birth control, was moot following the filing of an amended complaint (Louisiana College v. Kathleen Sebelius, No. 12-463, W.D. La.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104613).
GREENBELT, Md. - A Maryland federal judge on July 30 denied a motion to dismiss and a motion to stay a proposed class complaint accusing Jackson Therapy Partners LLC of sending unsolicited fax advertisements in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) 47 U.S.C.S. § 227 (Kensington Physical Therapy, Inc. v. Jackson Therapy Partners, LLC, No. 11-2467, D. Md.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 105539).
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - A federal judge in Rhode Island on July 26 dismissed with prejudice plaintiffs' third citizen suit under the Clean Water Act (CWA) against the owners of an adjacent property after finding that the plaintiffs have continually failed to follow the statutory guidelines for serving the defendants and providing sufficient presuit notice of the defendants' alleged violations of the act (Louis Paolino, et al. v. JF Realty LLC, et al., No. 12-39-ML, D. R.I.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104121).
NEW YORK - A shareholder has failed to show that a former director of The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. realized any "disgorgable profits" from another party's short-swing trades of Goldman Sachs stock, a federal judge in New York ruled July 27 in a memorandum order (James Mercer v. Rajat K. Gupta, No. 11-3828, S.D. N.Y.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104694).
BECKLEY, W.Va. - A federal judge in West Virginia on July 30 adopted a federal magistrate judge's recommendation to deny dismissal of a complaint in which a consumer alleges that a hotel company violated the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act (CCARDA) and the Electronic Funds Transfer Act (EFTA) 15 U.S.C.S. § 1601 when it issued him a gift card with an expiration date of less than five years after the issuance of the card (Joseph Sucec v. The Greenbrier, et al., No. 11-00968, S.D. W.Va.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 105584).
PITTSBURGH - A 72-year-old man who was fired from his job as a driver for a car dealership presents a prima facie case of sex and age discrimination against his former employer, a Pennsylvania federal judge held July 27 in denying the dealership's motion to dismiss the case (Aron Depelligrin v. A&L Motor Sales, LLC, No. 2:11-cv-01579, W.D. Pa.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104944).
PHILADELPHIA - A unanimous Pennsylvania Superior Court panel issued an opinion July 27 affirming summary judgment against a dental technician who alleges that fraudulent misrepresentation by a laboratory where he worked led to his exposure to beryllium; the panel affirmed that the workers' compensation act provides the exclusive remedy for the occupational disease alleged by the plaintiff (Michael Kostryckyj, et uxor v. Pentron Laboratory Technologies, et al, No. 1604 EDA 2011, Pa. Super.; 2012 PA Super 152; 2012 Pa. Super. LEXIS 1594).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 30 affirmed the dismissal of a medical malpractice case involving an illness contracted after an organ transplant, concluding that the trial court was correct to rule that the plaintiffs failed to satisfy the affidavit-of-merit requirement (David Mulholland, et al. v. Thomas Jefferson University Hospital Inc., et al., No. 11-3412, 3rd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 15666).