A hearing transcript or a comedy screenplay? A must-read for those who think about settling

On Tuesday, November 27, 2012 one of Prenda’s individual trolling cases, Sunlust Pictures LLC, v. Nguyen, (12-cv-01685) was dismissed by Judge Mary Scriven with fireworks (emphasis is mine):

The case is dismissed for failure to appear at this hearing, for failure to present a lawful agent, for attempted fraud on the Court by offering up a person who has no authority to act on behalf of the corporation as its corporate representative, and the Court will hear, by motion, a motion for sanctions and fees against this Sunlust entity and everyone affiliated with it, including a motion against Mr. Wasinger for his purposeful failure to appear at this hearing.

And a motion will also be heard on Mr. Duffy for his lack of candor in relation to his connection with this matter based upon the representation of Mr. Torres that he was contacted by the Prenda Law Group or Prenda Law, Inc. for the purpose of being retained as local counsel in this case and that was not presented to the Court in this purportedcorrespondence. The case is dismissed.

I intend to advise the other Judges in the Courthouse of the nature of this matter and may refer this matter to the Florida Bar for further proceedings.

What preceded this ruling is an unreal, Kafkaesque hearing, that I offer for your enjoyment below. I read this transcript in a gym on a treadmill a couple of hours ago collecting strange looks from the gymgoers: my uncontrollable giggles and gasps were probably too loud.

THE COURT: Mr. Lutz, who is the individual who you just spoke to in the Courtroom with you?
MR. LUTZ: Sorry?
THE COURT: Who is that behind you?
MR. STEELE: Your Honor, my name is John Steele.
THE COURT: Who are you?
MR. STEELE: I’m an attorney, but not involved in this case.
THE COURT: You’re an attorney with what law firm?
MR. STEELE: I’m not an attorney with any law firm right now […]

During the entire hearing, the judge’s attempted to understand who was who in this comedy with everthickening plot. Despite that it was apparently the only actual agenda, I am not sure that the judge succeeded in figuring that out. The only thing that she seemingly got right is that she dealt with a bunch of fraudsters, and very sloppy ones. I hope that she will carry out her intentions to alert other judges and to ask the Florida Bar to conduct yet another investigation.

Although both this hearing and the resulted dismissal were based on procedural questions, if you want to learn about the merits (or the lack thereof, to be more precise) of this case, read an excellent motion to dismiss written by the defense counsel Graham Syfert.

Please set sharp things aside, do not eat and drink, and sit firmly and comfortably, so you cannot fall and injure yourself. Laughs are guaranteed (not for Steele though: I am sure that some unpleasant phone conversations ruined his evening).

After you wipe off your tears and your hiccups subside, I will have a question for you. I am waiting.


Girls and boys, ladies and gentleman, senior citizens!

Do you understand that the clowns that appeared in this comedy are the very same people that manage to terrorize tens of thousands and to induce fear so irrational, that many, prior to understanding what’s going on, reach out their checkbooks and write four-figure amounts on the checks? How can it possibly happen?

Appendix. Prenda and Florida: a love story

Many things happened since my article/informal interview with Graham Syfert “Who and where is Prenda Law? What happened to John Steele?” written in May, but you do not need to follow all the intrigues, just one fact is enough to know. This fact is: Prenda has tried and failed to secure nine local counsels in Florida:

  • Joanne Diez: filed one case, it is not implausible that her name was used without her consent.
  • Robert Balzebre: resigned.
  • Joseph Perea: was an integral part of Prenda, officially left it, although continues trolling, investigated by the Florida Bar (initiated by multiple parties).
  • George Banas: resigned.
  • Maurice Castellanos: resigned.
  • Matthew Wasinger: resigned.
  • Jonathan Torres: resigned.
  • Alan Greenstein: a current counsel, but for how long will he hold the ground? 🙂

Every time a new guy understood that the newly acquired stink he couldn’t get rid of is exuded by Prenda Law, he ran away as quickly as possible. Even 75% contingency fee cannot persuade local lawyers to stain their future careers by associating themselves with a lawfirm that is actively investigated by the Florida Bar Association, and is expected to be investigated criminally in the nearest future.



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117 responses to ‘A hearing transcript or a comedy screenplay? A must-read for those who think about settling

  1. Funny how easily the tables turn and the defender becomes the hunter…

    Look at Alan J. Greenstein’s website:

    Alan J. Greenstein is a civil rights attorney. If you believe the government or a law enforcement agency has violated your civil rights, call Alan J. Greenstein, PA. We will provide you with a free consultation to determine the merits of your case.

  2. You wrote: “Do you understand that the clowns that appeared in this comedy are the very same people that manage to terrorize tens of thousands and to induce fear so irrational, that many, prior to understanding what’s going on, reach out their checkbooks and write four-figure amounts on the checks?”

    That’s wrong. The clowns that appeared in this comedy were pawns. The puppet players collecting the money were not even on stage.

    • Steele may not be the head of the snake, but he’s pretty close. The guy is simply not good for business, if he was expendable he would have been gone a long time ago. I think Paul Hansmeier is the “tech guy”, and is heavily involved but I don’t think he’s any more powerful than Steele.

      Duffy is a puppet. The local counsel are pawns. Gibbs is a misguided puppet. Lutz probably thinks he’s in the mafia.

      • @DD: Paul Hansmeier is more powerful than Steele (and has a much higher IQ as well). And he is a lawyer, possibly the mastermind of the entire scam. You confuse him with his younger brother Peter, who is the programmer that wrote the tracker and mow formally is in charge of the “6881 Forensics” sham.

        @David: if you mean Minnesota brothers (and maybe some Indian guy who may have invested some money later in process — according to unconfirmed rumors), than yes, you are right (partially: Steele still has a major stake). If there is someone else that we are not aware of, well, that is of course possible, although we have so many conspiracy theories that have been floating around recently, I became immune to statements not backed by at least half-facts.

        Nonetheless, shadow puppeteers, whoever they are, are not those who spread the FUD and scare poor Does into paying up either. So, technically, my phrase “Do you understand…” is not wrong.

  3. When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added”
    checkbox andd now each time a comment is added I get four
    e-mails wioth the same comment. Is there any way you can remove peopple
    from that service? Thanks!

    • For some reason this particular post is getting spammed more than anything else. Since it is a very old post, I disabled the comments here.

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