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.
As a logical next step to this dismissal, Graham Syfert filed two motions on 12/4:
- Defendant Tuan Nguyen’s motion for sanctions against attorney Matthew Wasinger
- Defendant Tuan Nguyen’s omnibus motion for sanctions against non-parties Prenda Law, Inc., Illinois attorney Paul Duffy, California attorney Brett Gibbs, and Illinois attorney John Steele
Motion for sanctions against attorney Matthew Wasinger
The goal of this motion is explained clearly:
Defendant would rather see the abusive and deceitful patterns of Prenda Law terminated than be awarded monetary sanctions.
To achieve this, Graham suggests compelling Mr. Wasinger to answer specific questions in a hope that
[…] the responses serve as a warning to other potential “local counsel” representatives of Prenda Law to caution themselves in representing Plaintiffs in Federal Court without a reasonable disclosure of the facts surrounding the cases that they are accepting and ability to adequately protect the interest of their clients.
Specifically, the Defendant would like the court compel, under oath the answers to the following questions:
- Have you ever had an in person or over the phone conversation with Sunny Leone or Daniel Weber?
- Did you ever try to contact the principals of Sunlust through Prenda Law, and if so, what did those agents tell you about communicating with your client?
- Have you ever spoken to or exhcnaged e-mailed with John Steele?
- Have you ever spoken to or exchanged e-mails with Paul Duffy?
- What percentage of recovery was promised to you for an award in this case, and what percentage was to be paid to Prenda Law?
- How much was to be paid to the client?
- When you received a check for your fee in settling a Prenda Law case, who was it signed by?
- What address and business name or personal name is/was on that check?
- What is the name of the account on that check (i.e. Prenda Law Operations, Prenda Law Trust, Paul Duffy Trust, Steele Law Firm Trust, etc.) and what institution was it drawn on?
- Were your actions in the Nguyen case at any time directed by any another person than Brett Gibbs (including Joseph Perea, Paul Duffy, John Steele, Mark Lutz, or any other person)?
- Who composed the original drafts of the materials filed in the Nguyen case while you were counsel?
- Did you ever ask to see the evidence which supposedly shows copyright infringement and have you seen that evidence?
- Have you ever talked to anyone with the last name Hansmeier concerning Prenda Law cases?
- Explain the circumstances around how you came to be hired by Prenda Law, whether you responded to one of their ads or how they responded to one of your ads, including the exact date that you were hired, and who did the hiring.
Omnibus motion for sanctions against Prenda, Paul Duffy, Brett Gibbs, and John Steele
This motion begins with a thorough proof that Paul Duffy is a decoy, a fake Prenda’s principal. If you read this blog regularly, you couldn’t miss the fact that I repeat this statement over and over again. The very first time I mentioned Duffy about a year ago, I did use the word “decoy”; and just a week ago I wrote:
…it is a common belief that Paul Duffy is a no one, a nominal president of Prenda, a patsy, that he does not write motions, does not argue in courtrooms, does not reply to emails.
One of Syfert’s argument is really funny, (palmface-funny, not laughter-funny): analyzing the document, purportedly written by Paul Duffy to the court (the one mentioned during the hearing), Graham made an interesting discovery:
A quick and dirty forensic examination of the PDF document, as sent by email by “Angela Van Hammel” of Prenda Law, reports that the PDF document was created by a computer user by the name of Kerry Eckenrode (the maiden name of John Steele’s wife) and was created by “Steele Law Firm.” Exhibit “C” attached gives the simple properties of this document and evidences that it was created on 11/20/2012 even though it is dated the 11/18/2012. It is possible that John Steele created the letter at the request of Paul Duffy, but it is unlikely that it was ever presented to Mr. Duffy for his approval, as he would know of his representation in the Sunlust matters.
Next, Syfert explains why everyone listed in the motion’s title should be disciplined. It does not make much sense to summarize the remainder of the document: the motion is quite concise and easy to read.
- ArsTechnica: Defendant asks judge to punish porn troll for lying to the court by Timothy Lee.
- TechDirt: Making The Case For Why John Steele And Prenda Law Deserve To Be Sanctioned by Mike Masnick.
- 12/18/2012: A quick update on dismissed Sunlust Pictures v. Nguyen case.
- 12/20/2012: Prenda hires an outside counsel in Sunlust Pictures v. Nguyen case.
- 12/21/2012: “White collar criminal defenders” attempt to defend Prenda’s scam artists. Surfacing of a new evidence of others’ identity misappropriation by Prenda.
- 12/30/2012: Does “under penalty of perjury” mean anything? Apparently not for Prenda and one of its plaintiffs
- 01/03/2013: Graham Syfert reiterates his demand for sanctions, accuses John Steele of fraud.