Anyone, who follows mass bittorent lawsuits, certainly remembers an amusing event when a judge ordered Prenda Law’s attorney, a copyright troll Brett Gibbs, to present a “list of the BitTorrent copyright infringement cases involving multiple joined John Doe Defendants filed Plaintiff’s counsel’s law firm or predecessor firm in federal court.” She ordered Gibbs to ”Identify the case by name, case number, court, and filing date…” and for each case, to indicate how many Doe defendants were actually served.
The reply was amusingly self-incriminating because, while 118 cases were listed, Gibbs famously admitted that “no defendants have been served in the below-listed cases.”
As I predicted, this document was widely used by defense lawyers and even judges to illustrate the trolls’ blatant abuse of judicial system. The document was so damning that when an attorney referred to it in a related case filed by Prenda, trolls freaked out and filed an absolutely frivolous and ridiculous motion for sanctions. However, those stories were already covered in this blog and elsewhere.
There is a slightly different story to tell: a reader has spotted that some of Prenda’s cases were not at all disclosed as ordered. There are two categories of such cases.
1. [Fellinis and Kurosawas of porn] v. Unknown
Being constantly exposed, trolls are forced to invent new methods to conceal their abuse of the legal process. One product of trolls’ creative arrogance is a set of new cases “[A pornographer] v. Unknown.” Complaints in such cases list a single Doe and about a hundred of so called “co-conspirators.” Some of these cases are even misleadingly titled as “[A pornographer] v. John Doe”, while in reality such a complaint lists pages of IP addresses.
The main goal of this novel approach is still the same: to obtain personal data of many alleged file-sharers at the cost of filing a single lawsuit and subsequently harass them to coerce settlements.
- 11-cv-03479 (caed) Pacific Century International, Ltd v. Unknown (actually a single Doe plus 120 co-conspirators), filed 2011-12-30 by Brett L. Gibbs, Esq., Prenda Law Inc.
- 11-cv-03478 (caed) First Time Videos, LLC, v. John Doe (actually a single Doe plus 115 co-conspirators), filed 2011-12-30 by Brett L. Gibbs, Esq., Prenda Law Inc.
- 11-cv-03476 (caed) Hard Drive Productions, Inc. v. Unknown (actually a single Doe plus 128 co-conspirators), filed 2011-12-30 by Brett L. Gibbs, Esq., Prenda Law Inc.
These three cases (and maybe others — I did not perform an exhaustive search) were not mentioned in the report at all. Gibbs probably can “explain” this omission: he may dance around the truth claiming that these cases are not among “copyright infringement cases involving multiple joined John Doe Defendants,” but I don’t believe that any judge would buy this weak excuse. A naïve belief that a pure technicality prevents judges (and public) from seeing the bigger picture is simply laughable.
2. Florida’s “Pure Bill of Discovery”
Another set of cases that did not make it to the list is comprised of Florida’s state cases that are based on the antiquated “Pure Bill of Discovery.” Again, trolls may claim that those are not “copyright infringement cases,” and technically they are correct: state courts have nothing to do with copyright, which is a federal issue. Nonetheless, since these cases are based on the alleged copyright infringement, I’m sure that judge Lucy Koh (and other federal judges) would love to know about them and about the fact that Miami-Dade judicial hellhole continues to usurp federal powers and deserves a good slap on the wrist.