Florida 'Abbott And Costello' Prenda Case Ends Not With A Bang, But A Whimper

from the that's-too-bad dept

As expected, it looks like Prenda, along with John Steele and Paul Duffy, have a tiny bit of good news as the first case which suggested they were committing fraud on the court, in the courtroom of Judge Mary Scriven, has been closed without any further action. If you don't recall, this was the case in which the transcript was something of an Abbott and Costello worthy routine, with various lawyers trying desperately to back out of representing Sunlust, a Prenda client. You really need to read the whole transcript, but among other things, Paul Duffy claimed Prenda had nothing to do with the case, while the lawyer seeking to get out of the case said he was hired by Prenda. Mark Lutz makes an appearance in which he's dressed down by the judge for dressing down in the courtroom and being a sham of a "corporate representative." And then there's the appearance of John Steele, who claims he's there on no official business other than to observe, but who repeatedly confers with Lutz, and who the judge quickly figures out likely has his hands in this whole mess.

Unfortunately, some sort of settlement was clearly reached, as the defendant Tuan Nguyen, represented by Graham Syfert (who has battled against Prenda on numerous fronts), recently withdrew all motions against Prenda, Steele and Duffy, so the court agreed to close the case without further investigation into the potential fraud on the court. Of course, in a bit of irony, the final order of business before closing the case is to... let another set of lawyers off the case, after they claimed conflict of interest among their clients (mainly because Brett Gibbs had filed a declaration implicating Steele, and they were representing both). It's a bit unfortunate that this case is closing, as it seemed like another one where a judge might suss out some clear examples of fraud on the court by Prenda (denying they were involved at all in this case is a big one, for example...). But, this case is now off the docket entirely. Hopefully Nguyen is cashing a nice settlement check from Steele, Hansmeier and Duffy.


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    out_of_the_blue, May 31st, 2013 @ 4:02pm

    Whimper, Mike.

    Gave you the benefit of hope and skimmed for some pun on "wimp", but appears is just your misperring.


    Take a loopy tour of Techdirt.com! You always end up same place!
    http://techdirt.com/
    Mike Masnick, the economist with the soul of a lawyer. Watch for his soporific "At The Bench" series.
    12:01:23[n- 2-5]

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2013 @ 4:58pm

    Really milking this thing, Mike. This isn't even close to a story, yet you ran with it. You're really desperate/out of material, I see. Maybe man up and take an actual stand on important issues? Nah. Why bother? Just pump out this nonsense and go for the clicks! Suits you so well.

     

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      Mike Masnick (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 6:01pm

      Re:

      This isn't even close to a story

      Really? Key case involving a company that lots of our readers are interested in? Getting closed? Yes, that's a story.

      Tell you what, when you're hired as my editor, THEN you get to tell me what's a story. Until then, sorry, but I get to make that decision.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2013 @ 6:53pm

        Re: Re:

        I'm not allowed to have an opinion unless I'm your editor? LOL! Great comeback, Mike. Haven't seen that one in a while. But you've definitely played that card once or twice. You need new material. Why not nut up and discuss something that matters on the merits without running away. I fucking dare you. Doesn't this mindless shit get old? Be a man! You can do it!

         

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          apauld (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 7:12pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          If you would look at the what/when/where/how other media sites/outlets are covering the story you should then understand that your assertion of this being a non story is simply moronic. As for Mike's editor quip, that is just his polite way of telling you that your a worthless twit.

           

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          Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2013 @ 9:41pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Clearly you being a mindless shit hasn't got old.

           

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      btrussell (profile), Jun 2nd, 2013 @ 6:56am

      Re:

      "Really milking this thing, Mike. This isn't even close to a story, yet you ran with it."

      Conclusion. Just because you only get what mainstream press feeds you, doesn't mean others don't like to hear the conclusion of a story.

       

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    Nora, May 31st, 2013 @ 5:04pm

    Re

    So some idiot files stupid motions in federal court and nothing happens. Except Masnick loses his Dick (moby version). He has to chase Steele elsewhere. How fucking boring - nothing to see here folks, Macknick lost his Dick - not that he ever had one.

     

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      sophisticatedjanedoe (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 5:17pm

      Re: Re

      Ohai John.

       

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        sophisticatedjanedoe (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 5:24pm

        Re: Re: Re

         

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        Julian Perez, May 31st, 2013 @ 5:40pm

        Re: Re: Re

        Are you sure that's John Steele?

        If it is -

        You forked over an awful lot of your dwindling cash to make that suit "go away." But there will be others. You'll be in prison and broke anytime now; all it needs is one to stick and there are plenty coming.

        You're the kind of loathesome scum that gives the entire legal profession a bad reputation.

        I see you kept your mouth shut during the Wright hearings when you got what was coming. My favorite part of the 9th Circuit hearings? You demanded an appeal, only to bounce it back to Wright, who gave you further sanctions.

        You're going to jail.

        You're going to be broke.

        And you'll deserve every bit of it, because of the lives you ruined by the industrial quantity in your extortion scheme.

         

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          sophisticatedjanedoe (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 6:56pm

          Re: Re: Re: Re

          Not sure but strongly suspect (I have been analyzing his style enough).

           

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            apauld (profile), Jun 1st, 2013 @ 12:18am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re

            Mike, PLEASE! Tell us that 'Nora' is commenting from a Mullvad VPN.... That would just be great....

             

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            Pragmatic, Jun 3rd, 2013 @ 5:44am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re

            I haven't had enough contact with him to know if you're right but if the identifiers are there, you probably are.

            Don't they just hate it when the chickens come home to roost? Well that's what they get for extortion. I've got no sympathy for them.

            I'm amused that his shill apologists keep popping up to tell us to give it a rest. Try to imagine what TD would look like if they ran it. Actually, you don't have to. I've already outed OOTB1 and trust me, her blog is all pro-maximalist whining and conspiracy theories involving imaginary commies coming to get us, or something.

            I prefer Techdirt because Mike and the other contributors can put together a coherent argument and keep their stories straight.

             

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      apauld (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 7:05pm

      Re: Re

      John "Prison Bitch" Steele has a nice ring to it, don't you think?

       

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    That One Guy (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 5:20pm

    Strange, I wasn't aware the three stooges had accounts here, team prenda must be pretty desperate to make sure this particular case goes away as completely, and quietly as possible.

    Anyway, regarding the article, as sad as I am that he dropped it, given how desperate prenda has got to be getting, I can only imagine they signed over quite the hefty check to get him to go away; funny when you consider how those extortionists are so used to it happening the other way around.

     

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    Edward Teach, May 31st, 2013 @ 5:24pm

    Judges Love The Legal Profession

    Mates, this be no real surprise. 'Tis well-known that Judges will rule so as to favor the Legal "Profession" as often as they can. Despite Steele, Duffy, Hansmeier and Lutz looking like soft, freshwater swabs, the Judge won't sanction them until they've besmirched the Legal Profession itself.

    Arrr! What a lot of ectoplasms!

     

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    steell (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 5:26pm

    Trolls

    It's a waste of time to read the comments, it's all the Trolls and the replies to the trolls.

    If you trolls are out to chase people away, congratulations, you just did it again.

     

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      That One Guy (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 6:34pm

      Re: Trolls

      Not hardly, the trolls on the prenda articles are just another measure of humor dealing with an already funny debacle.

      The articles about prenda flailing around in desperation to avoid jail time: comedy gold.

      Watching the trolls scramble like mad to get people to stop noticing said flailing by prenda: icing on the cake, or the second act to a world class comedy show.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2013 @ 5:31pm

    Interesting ... charges of committing fraud upon the court levied upon the plaintiff go away if the defendant withdraws all motions.

    Weird

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jun 1st, 2013 @ 6:38am

      Re:

      i though they committed fraud against the defendant using the court.

      technically pleading the fifth basically prevented them from committing fraud against the court because they didn't fraudulently respond to the courts inquires.

       

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    Julian Perez, May 31st, 2013 @ 5:34pm

    Not enough, but more is coming

    Someone above said how ironic it is John Steele and the gang made a hefty settlement to make a lawsuit go away. That IS rich.

    If anyone out there does not believe John Steele's fate is anything less than totally deserved, I encourage you to read the ultimate douchebro tweets he made, the height of crass arrogance.

    At one point, these guys were in so much trouble I felt sorry for them. Reading these tweets fixed me of that.

    BittorrentBull 1-10-13

    BitTorrentBull 1-09-13

    No one's fate is more deserved than these loathesome scumbags.

    I hope to see them broke, penniless or in prison for the innocent lives they ruined, their Minnesota homes confiscated, their reputations sullied forever as criminals running an extortion scheme.

     

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    Anon E. Mous (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 5:54pm

    Prenda really had no choice but to settle with Syfert & Nguyen after the lawyer Prenda hired wanted the hell out of that case.

    Once the Judge informed everyone of that letter Duffy sent that Prenda had nothing to do with this and the Judge quizzed the attorney hired by Prenda and it was revealed that Gibbs on behalf of Prenda hired him, the jig was up.

    Then that brilliant Q & A with Mark Lutz and the Judge where Lutz didn't know this or that and Steele desperately seeing Lutz falter and trying to tell him to say he was a 1099 contractor to the Judge to save Prenda and Lutz was all but comical.

    And then Steele so desperate to save the Sunlust case gets himself noticed by the Judge and panics when the Judge asked him who he was, and Steele the bumbling fool cant get it out fast enough that he doesn't have anything to do with this case (now where have we heard that line before) and he wasn't licenced to practice in florida and is now retired.

    The fact that Syfert let the Lawyer Prenda picked up for this case what and who he was dealing with, was more than enough that the other Lawyer Prenda hired wanted nothing to do with the case.

    Duffy's brilliant letter to the court informing it that Prenda had nothing to do with the case was the start of the Judge getting suspicious.

    Then Lutz trying to represent himself as being a representive of Sunlust (now where have we heard of Lutz trying to be a represenitive of a entity before)

    The fact that Lutz also said that he appeared around the country as a 1099 contractor for various Prenda cases is on the record, and would have been used in the sanctions against Prenda.

    Steele who's famous "I don't know anything about any of these cases, first I have heard of them" was dumb enough to try and pull Lutz ass our of the fire when the Judge was quizzing them and then gets caught by the Judge feeding Lutz an answer.

    Syfert wisely pointed out the Stelle, Lutz, Prenda connection, and the Judge obviously picked up from their what a bunch of B.S. Prenda was feeding the court.

    They had to settle this out, as damning as Judge Wrights ruling was this one would have been just as bad if sanctions were handed down.

    Steele I am sure was on the Phone with Duffy begging him to settle this out, so they didn't get slammed by this Judge.

    Syfert and Nyugen won this hands down all due to Prenda, Duffy and Steele's incompetence it would seem in my opinion.

    The letter informing the court that Prenda had nothing to do with the case was the first nail in the coffin. Lutz's brilliant answers were the next nail.

    Steele panicking and seeing Lutz flaling and drowning and piping up from the gallery to Lutz "say your a 1099 contractor", "say your a 1099 contractor" and then getting noticed by the Judge (nice one John, all you needed was a red nose and some red floppy shoes to go along with the show)was the next nail.

    The final nail in the coffin was Syfert bringing up the connection with Prenda, Steele and Lutz that was it for them.

    The Prenda gang could in no way have another case where the lawyers might get referred to the bar (yeah again) and get sanction by the coutrt and the Judge making that available to other courts, the damage would have been fatal.

    I am sure the facts of this case will be noted in others, however I still cant wait for the 9th Circuit Court to hear the Appeal of Judge Wrights sanctions, that should be most entertaining.

    I see someone's bruised ego is hear posting as Nora, gee I sure hope they aren't playing dress up as Nora as well.

    Maybe that is why the wife wanted a divorce, didn't like it when they wore her garments around, course that's hypothetical, but might make some sense considering someone picked BitTorrentBetty as a username on twitter and Nora here...always a womans name.. wonder why.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2013 @ 7:21pm

    I love how the trolls in these threads completely ignore all the fraud that Prenda has committed. That evil Mike and his stating facts!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2013 @ 9:42pm

    John Steele and average_joe just hate it when due process is enforced.

     

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    Anon E. Mous (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 10:19pm

    http://douchebagdujour.com/node/20

    Bwahahahaha Nice Pic John, were you waiting your turn on the stripper Pole? What all male strip club was this at?

    I wonder if BitTorrentBetty was there tweeting about it.

    I can't wait to hear your acceptance speech for this prestigious award. Finally someone has recognized your for being all you could be!

     

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    gyffes, May 31st, 2013 @ 10:53pm

    Plus...

    What is this, grade school? "I fucking dare you...".. "nut up.."

    Who TALKS like that? Oh, wait, idiots.

    Nevermind, keep going.

     

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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), May 31st, 2013 @ 10:54pm

    I would like to suggest it wasn't a check.

    Would you take a check from anyone involved with Prenda?
    If you said yes, please let me know... I have a bridges to sell you.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 1st, 2013 @ 1:51am

    so, even though there has been a settlement over the case itself, why did the judge not take any action over the behaviour of the Prenda lawyers? if there is a suspicion of 'fraud on the court', why did she not pursue that bit?

     

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    Andrew D. Todd, Jun 2nd, 2013 @ 8:42am

    Everyone Now Knows About Prenda Law.

    Here's an article in Business Week. Nothing new to Techdirt readers, of course, but a very fair summation in a national general-interest magazine.

    Claire Suddath, Prenda Law, the Porn Copyright Trolls, Business Week, May 30, 2013

    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-05-30/prenda-law-the-porn-copyright-trolls#r=read

     

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