Florida state cases (Pure bill of discovery)
Florida has a little used and relatively archaic law on the books allowing a Complaint for Pure Bill of Discovery. You can read more about it here.
Trolls have been filing cases using this law to unmask Does by subpoena and extract settlements. Does who don’t settle or dispute may then be referred out to other trolls for actual lawsuit. Jurisdiction and joinder have so far been a non-issue and Florida does not yet seem to mind that their discovery law is being used as a fishing expedition. You can review a motion that outlines the Steele fIrm’s argument for use of this law and issuance of subpoenas here.
Additionally, in some cases the the usual Plaintiffs (Patrick Collins, K-Beech, Third Degree, Raw Films, Diabolic, Nucorp. Berlin Media and Zero Tolerance) are joined together against hundreds of Does for what can only be multiple different works and swarms. I don’t see how this can possibly be proper and only serves to deny the court the filing fees it is due.
Sooner or later, and I hope sooner, someone in Florida (I’m looking at you, State Bar and Attorney General) will take notice of this practice. I am also hoping that the trolls eventually name a state Doe in Federal court so that a Federal judge will take note of what Florida is doing regarding subject matter over which they clearly have no jurisdiction.
The whole thing stinks and is riddled with what appear to be egregious abuses, but that’s nothing new.
Another interesting read regarding the specifics of Florida cases: The Latest in Nationwide Internet User Identification – Part 1 (The Ancient State Law “Pure Bill of Discovery”)
A good 2004 article in the The Florida Bar Journal: The Complaint for a Pure Bill of Discovery & mdash; A Living, Breathing, Modern Day Dinosaur? by Daniel Morman.
Obtaining court documents
Unfortunately, unlike federal court system, state/county courts make it a hassle and prohibitively expensive to obtain court documents. I bet trolls love this aspect.
Our online docket for case information is available at
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/home.asp click on Civil/Probate Records
At this time we do not accept case filings via email.
Copies of documents in the file can be obtained:
in person – at our office in the Dade County Courthouse – 73 W. Flagler Street – Room 133 – Monday thru Friday 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.
by mail – our correspondence section handles all copy orders by mail. We do not take copy requests via e-mail. Fees are $1.00 per page and $2.00 to certify a document. You can contact the Correspondence unit at 305-349-7464 for information on the number of pages. The mailing address is Clerk of Courts – Correspondence Unit – 73 W. Flagler St., Room 137, Miami, Fl 33130. Please send a self addressed stamped envelope along with your request.
Update from a Doe:
Here’s an updated number for the Miami-Dade Clerk Correspondence Dept.: 305 349-7451. Took a lot of detective work to get it. This is the only number I was able to reach a human. The one provided in a previous comment is never picked up. The process of obtaining court docs is incredibly slow and expensive (snail mail request & delivery / $1 per page). I couldn’t even get a local attorney to sell me a copy.
There are couple of posts about Lightspeed cases: consider reading comments: tons of insight.
- Lightspeed Media Corporation v. John Doe: a quick Q & A
- Attorney’s opinion: Lightspeed’s claim is a farce
Per community request, I started adding separate pages per case. The idea is to unite Does and hopefully share legal expenses. If you want a page for a specific case added, do not hesitate to email me.
- Nucorp v. Does 1-246 (11-42403-CA-06)
- Patrick Collins, K-Beech v. Does 1-414 (11-42412-CA-30)
- Patrick Collins at al v Does 1-915 (11-37821-CA-22)
I’m a journalist for the Miami New Times looking into how Florida courts enable porn companies from around the world to discover the names of supposed copyright violators. I’ve spoken to one woman who has filed a class-action suit against these companies for calling her work office and trying to shame/harass her into paying a settlement. I would like to hear from anyone else who has had this happen to them. Conversations can be anonymous. Please send me an email if interested in getting your side of the story out. Thanks.