Guardaley | Voltage

A Washington nonprofit aims to unveil copyright trolls’ dirty secrets


Remember Elf-Man v. Lamberson (WAED 13-cv-00395) — a bittorent copyright infringement case that resulted in the troll (Guardaley) paying $100K attorney’s fees to an innocent defendant? It was an encouraging victory, a proof that a fighting victim can prevail over the secretive network of foreign “investors” and unethical attorneys who, as Judge Otis Wright aptly put it, have been “plundering the citizenry” for almost a decade.

In addition to giving hope to victims, this case lifted a cover of mystery from the trolls’ operations. Because of the defendant’s attorney Christopher Lynch’s diligent work, the public learned some of the trolls’ secrets (for example, the Griffin fraud, which is still waiting for a deserved attention from the alphabet agencies).

While almost three years passed since the judgment, it looks like this case still hides a ticking bomb or two – in the form of sealed exhibits – and has a potential of damaging the copyright trolling industry.

On 10/31/2017 the Center for Justice – a Spokane nonprofit organization “dedicated to access to justice, government accountability, and judicial transparency” – filed the motions to intervene and to unseal six exhibits:

In short, several of the documents filed under seal may expose how film companies, investigators and lawyers have coordinated an illegal settlement factory, sending threatening and deceptive letters to hundreds of targets, and seeking quick settlements priced just low enough that it is less expensive for the defendant to pay rather than to defend the claim.

The relevant documents:

It is too early to speculate when and if the exhibits in question will be made public. I hope they will, and if so, the new evidence of the trolls’ illegal conduct will help thousands of defendants, and maybe even facilitate a counter-attack against the trolls by means of a class action.

Just before the deadline to respond, the troll attorneys from this case (David Lowe and Maureen VanderMay) filed motions to extend time to respond to CFJ’s motions (ECF 121 and ECF 122).




Yesterday both Center for Justice and Christopher Lynch filed their oppositions to the trolls’ last minute requests for a delay:

[…] Given Elf-Man’s role in what appears to be fraud on the U.S. District Court system, Elf-Man should not receive any equity, such as its requested extension of time.

Elf-Man’s Motion, ECF No. 121, and its former counsel’s Motion, ECF No. 122, are filed late in violation of the Local Rules. Elf-Man has unclean hands and this Court should not grant its late motion filings. Mr. Lamberson respectfully requests that these Motions be denied.


On 2/5/18, Judge Rice granted the stipulated motion to unseal, except 40-1, which was instead redacted and filed as 132-1.

The unsealed documents are:

I doubt that the unsealing is the intervenor’s end goal: I’m intrigued and waiting for the next steps.

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10 responses to ‘A Washington nonprofit aims to unveil copyright trolls’ dirty secrets

  1. Trying so hard to recall the petulant copyright troll attorney who first cooked up the Noerr- Pennington Antitrust Immunity Doctrine argument. Thinking….Thinking… . Anyway, absolute Genius in hindsight.

  2. It is nice seeing them keeping to the pattern of waiting until the last possible second to file, then ask for an extension…
    Any bets on the next document filed will be on the last possible date & another extension request?

    • All takes time when you have to get your marching orders from Germany. Of course they waited until last minute to ask for extension, are we surprised? Nope.

  3. Personally I’m waiting for Franziska the Filly to show up in defense of her mistress Colette and Malibu Media. Haven’t heard a squeak out of her since they had to downsize the mansion and fire Nicoletti.

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