Devin Nunes' Favorite Lawyer On The Hook For Over $20k In Sanctions

from the pay-up-biss dept

Last month we wrote that Rep. Devin Nunes’ favorite lawyer, Steven Biss, who has been filing frivolous, vexatious SLAPP suit after frivolous, vexatious SLAPP suit, was finally facing some sanctions. The specific case did not directly involve Nunes, but rather one of his aides, Derek Harvey, who had filed a ridiculous SLAPP suit against CNN. As we wrote last month, the court had easily tossed the original lawsuit and warned Biss not to file an amended complaint unless he had a credible legal theory. Biss did not have a credible legal theory, but he still filed an amended complaint. And thus, the court issued sanctions, saying that Harvey, Biss and other lawyers would be on the hook for CNN’s legal fees.

The latest filing in the case is the bill coming due. Harvey and Biss need to pay CNN $21,437.50 in legal fees (and an additional $52.26 in costs and expenses). That might not seem like that much in the grand scheme of things (especially for a lawyer who has claimed his client, Devin Nunes, is owed over a billion dollars for defamation, but it is still real money that someone is going to need to pay — though it remains an open question as to who is actually going to pay it).

There’s not much to see in the ruling itself, as it basically says that the fees CNN’s lawyers outlined are within the standards that the court’s local rules say are “presumptively reasonable.” The lawyers admit that they’re actually asking for less than they normally charge in order to keep them “reasonable” in the Court’s eyes, and the Court basically says “sounds good.”

It does often seem that lawyers who file tons of frivolous and vexatious lawsuits are able to get away with it for a while, with courts giving them many, many chances and being extremely reluctant to issue sanctions. And, even when sanctions are issued, they tend to be relatively low. However, with such repeat offenders, we’ve often seen that courts across the country take notice, and once one court has sanctioned this kind of behavior, it can open the floodgates. We’ll see what happens in other Biss lawsuits.

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Companies: cnn

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Comments on “Devin Nunes' Favorite Lawyer On The Hook For Over $20k In Sanctions”

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35 Comments
Bobvious says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:Exp > Log

It’s very common to see the two interchanged in common parlance, but we know what you meant.

https://revisionmaths.com/advanced-level-maths-revision/pure-maths/calculus/exponentials-and-logarithms

We’re a generally forgiving bunch here.

"Can logarithm of a negative number be real?" , https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=soFDU-1knNE

sumgai (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Math newbies. You want to go for the factorial: n! = n + (n-1)!

21437^2 = 459,544,969

21437! = 19,613,364,732,524,698,964,556 and change (My calculator first choked and just said "Overflow". I had to put the decimal point two places to the left to get a meaningful number.)

Somebody’s gonna empty Amazon’s whole warehouse of Maalox, that’s a given!

Christenson says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

More than that…without calculating or heavy accounting
21437! has at least 2143 zeros at the end of it…and at least 60,000 total digits!

Hint: 21437! = 21437 21436 21435 321,
For the zeros, notice 2143 of those factors end in at least one zero, and I’m neglecting all the ones ending in more than one zero, the 2143 pairs of factors ending in 5 and 2, and more combinations.

For the digits, we can simply count that we have 20,437 factors larger than 1000, and each of these adds 3 digits apiece to the total.

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
That One Guy (profile) says:

Going above and beyond... in abusing the system

When a lawyer faces a penalty for their behavior in court you know they really screwed up, because it takes some serious work to get a judge to issue more than a stern finger wagging when it comes to lawyers as many, many articles on TD can attest to.

This comment has been deemed insightful by the community.
PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Going above and beyond... in abusing the system

If they’re raiding the house of a lawyer, let alone one who directly served a president, I think you can bet they’ll have done their homework before even considering signing the search order.

But, for me, the funniest part of it is that apparently he’s been trying to call in Trump’s debts in order to help fight this. Rudy, you expect Trump to pay his bills? Have you… met Trump? He left his voters stranded in freezing conditions after rallies because he wasn’t paying the bus companies to take the back from the venue, when he was trying to convince them to give him the vote, do you think he’ll pay the guy who failed to overturn the election for him?

Annonymouse says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Going above and beyond... in abusing the system

If they’re raiding the house of a lawyer, let alone one who directly served a president, I think you can bet they’ll have done their homework before even considering signing the search order.

Judges were originally lawyers and doing their homework has never been a standard or even a common practice on either side of our common border.

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