Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Day In Court . . . . #14

Post #14

Greetings All! Yesterday was our first appearance in Bourbon County Kansas District Court on the case of Toytrackerz LLC v. American Plastic Equipment Inc.

Even though there was a lot to cover, in the end, there were some procedural problems and jurisdictional questions that precluded getting to the factual issues in the case.

First and foremost, the Federal Court had not sent down a copy of the court file containing all the documents filed between the time of removal and remand. Without the complete file, the Judge couldn't verify my arguments about lack of service and lack of attention to deadlines by American Plastic Equipment. He couldn't even verify that I had filed my primary motion for Summary Judgement.

However, I was able to put into the court record a thorough timeline from the time that American's first lawyer came into the case through the time he was put in jail [he is now in Federal prison for five years] to the time that American's new attorney entered the case and hasn't adhered to the deadlines set down by the rules and the judge.

American's attorney, in an attempt at rebuttal, raised a jurisdictional question that was interesting on its face. The Judge gave us 60 days to file a brief. However, the question was only interesting on its face. After a couple of hours research, I had the answer and will be preparing the documents shortly.

So, with some orders to both attorneys regarding ensuring the case file was made complete and the judge's questions answered, the judge reset the case for May 2007. That's not unusual or onerous for a complicated civil case. There is a lot of issues on the table.

Just before Judge dismissed everyone, American's attorney jumped up and claimed to have a 'couple of matters to clean up.'

One was yet another request for yet another continuance to file an Answer to one of our motions. He claimed he had until Tuesday to file for the continuance. I redid the math a while later and realized he'd run out of time on Monday. The judge gave him until the end of the week to comply, but I will be examining the issues closely and probably contesting the motion.

The second was his motion for Summary Judgment on the issue of 'Fort Apache'. He claimed he has four facts that make judgement obvious for his client. We disagree and have our own facts to back it up. However, it didn't get that far. The Judge's response was a smile and this statement:

"Counsel, your client is in no position to suddenly be in a hurry."

American's attorney sputtered and said they needed an injunction on the issue. Judge replied to the effect of:

"Counsel, after the way you've screwed up this case, you're going to have to tell your client to get over being in a hurry."

With another smile, we were all dismissed. Thanks to everyone for their continued interest and support. Terri