Tag Archives: memorandum

Roundup on Pending Cases Involving the DC anti-SLAPP Statute

After a period of relative quiet, there has been a flurry of activity in the District of Columbia federal and state courts in cases involving the DC anti-SLAPP statute.  Here’s a summary of where the various cases stand:              •           Sherrod v. Breitbart:  The case drawing the most attention is the pending appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in Sherrod v. Breitbart.  There, the defendants/appellants have filed their opening brief; the District of Columbia has filed an amicus brief; Public Citizen and the American Civil Liberties Union of the Nation’s Capital have filed …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ 2 Comments

Another judge to decide if anti-SLAPP statute applies in federal court

In response to a libel complaint filed by Yasser Abbas, one of the sons of Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian President, the defendants have filed an anti-SLAPP motion and a separate motion to dismiss the complaint for failure to state a claim.  (The law firm representing Schanzer is the same one that filed an anti-SLAPP motion on behalf of the City Paper in response to the suit brought by Dan Snyder.  Snyder ultimately dismissed his suit before the court ruled on the anti-SLAPP motion). 

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

Maddow and NBC Move to Dismiss Second Dean Suit

Rachel Maddow and related NBC defendants today moved to dismiss the duplicative federal court suit filed by Dean and others. This second anti-SLAPP motion, necessitated because Dean is forum shopping in federal court instead of litigating his pending case in Superior Court, makes many of the arguments previously made by the defendants in the Superior Court action. Because the case is now pending in federal court, however, and in light of the opinion in 3M v. Boulter, the defendants argue that the anti-SLAPP statute clearly applies in federal court. They quote from Judge Leon’s “Statement of Reasons” in Sherrod v. …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

Maddow and NBC Defendants Move to Stay Second Dean Suit

Rachel Maddow and related NBC defendants today moved to stay the federal court lawsuit filed by Bradley Dean until an identical suit can be resolved in the Superior Court. As I previously explained, on February 21, Dean voluntarily moved to dismiss his Superior Court action, explaining that he intended to refile it in federal court “due to the Court’s recent decision in 3M v. Boulter, No. 11-cv-1527 (RLW).” True to his word, he filed his federal court complaint, which is virtually identical to his Superior Court complaint, on February 21. (The case was randomly assigned to Judge Leon, which is …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

Anti-SLAPP Statute Raised in Another High-Profile Federal Court Case

Lanny Davis and his related companies, which are defendants in a defamation suit pending in DC federal court that is captioned 3M v. Boulter, today filed a motion to dismiss the suit under DC’s anti-SLAPP statute. The complaint, which was filed on June 28, 2011, alleges that, in early 2007, a 3M subsidiary acquired all of the outstanding shares of Acolyte, a British company engaged in the business of developing and marketing products whose aim was to detect certain dangerous microorganisms. It alleges that, at the time of the acquisition, Acolyte’s only commercially viable product was a device that allegedly allowed …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

NBC, MSNBC and Rachel Maddow Invoke Anti-SLAPP Statute in DC Superior Court Action

The DC anti-SLAPP statute has been invoked in another case: Dean v. NBC Universal.  There, NBC, MSNBC and Rachel Maddow moved today to dismiss the suit under the anti-SLAPP statute or for failure to state a claim In the complaint, filed July 27 in DC Superior Court, the plaintiff alleges that he is “a renowned and accomplished hard metal rocker who came to Jesus Christ” and has “founded a non-profit foundation” (which is also a plaintiff) whose “mission is to restore Judeo-Christian and family values to society and for posterity, particularly by positively influencing the nation’s youth.” The complaint alleges …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

Anti-SLAPP Statute Invoked in Another Federal Court Case

While the defendants in the Sherrod case filed a notice of appeal today from the denial of their motion there, defendants in a different federal district case today filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by Joseph Farah and others. The complaint, captioned Farah v. Esquire, was filed in federal court on June 28, 2011 and asserts claims for defamation, false light invasion of privacy, tortious interference with business relations, violations of the Lanham Act, and misappropriation invasion of privacy. According to the complaint, the plaintiffs have “covered the controversy concerning whether or not President Obama is a natural-born American citizen eligible …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

Anti-SLAPP Statute Invoked By Fox Television Station

The recently-enacted DC anti-SLAPP statute has been invoked by another defendant. In Lehan v. Fox Television Stations, a case filed in DC Superior Court on June 10, 2011, the plaintiff alleges that he is a highly-regarded DC-firefighter who, “[b]ecause of his reliability and willingness to work overtime, and due to special events and homeland security policies within the District of Columbia, he was frequently offered overtime, which he accepted.” The complaint alleges that, on January 31, 2011, Fox News published a story about overtime incurred by DC firefighters and emergency medical personnel. It alleges that the story was inaccurate in its description …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

City Paper Attempts to SLAPP Back at Dan Snyder

Today, the City Paper and reporter Dave McKenna filed a motion to dismiss the complaint brought by Daniel Snyder in the District of Columbia Superior Court.  The defendants are moving under the District of Columbia’s recently enacted anti-SLAPP statute. The motion argues that dismissal is necessary because Snyder “seeks to use the processes of this Court as a vehicle to punish the author and publisher of a commentary critical of him, and to send a message to the news media generally that such reporting will lead to prohibitively expensive and time-consuming litigation.”   It argues that the article in question “plainly …

[ CONTINUE READING ]

Posted in General \ Leave a comment

DC Anti-SLAPP Statute Invoked For First Time

The defendants in a lawsuit captioned Sherrod v. Breitbart today filed a motion to dismiss the suit under DC’s recently-enacted anti-SLAPP statute.  This appears to be the first use of the anti-SLAPP statute, which only became effective on March 31. The complaint, which was originally filed in DC Superior Court on February 11, 2011, and removed by the defendants to federal court on March 4, 2011, asserts claims for defamation, false light and intentional infliction of emotional distress stemming from the defendants’ alleged selective editing and dissemination of a videotape featuring the plaintiff.

Posted in General \ Leave a comment