Flynn’s lawyers have stopped talking to Trump’s lawyers. Still talking to Mueller, though.


TweedleDee & TweedleDumb

❝ Lawyers for former national security adviser Michael Flynn have told President Donald Trump’s legal team that they are no longer communicating with them about special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election interference.

The decision could be a sign that Flynn is moving to cooperate with Mueller’s investigation or negotiate a deal for himself. Flynn’s legal team communicated the decision this week, said a person familiar with the move…blah, blah, blah

In large criminal investigations, defense lawyers routinely share information with each other. But it can become unethical to continue such communication if one of the potential targets is looking to negotiate a deal with prosecutors…

❝ In addition to scrutinizing Flynn’s contacts with Russia during the transition and campaign, Mueller has been investigating the retired U.S. Army lieutenant general’s role in $530,000 worth of lobbying work his now-defunct firm performed for a Turkish businessman during the final months of the 2016 presidential campaign.

I guess becoming a pimp for one or another segment of the American Military-Industrial Complex like his peers wasn’t sufficiently rewarding.

Children forced to be their own attorneys in immigration courts

After a long, scary trek through three countries to escape the gang violence in El Salvador, a 15-year-old boy found himself scared again a few months back, this time in a federal immigration court here. There was an immigration judge in front of him and a federal prosecutor to his right. But there was no one helping him understand the charges against him.

“I was afraid I was going to make a mistake,” the boy said in Spanish from his uncle’s living room, in a modest cinder-block house on the south side of this city. “When the judge asked me questions, I just shook my head yes and no. I didn’t want to say the wrong thing.”

Every week in immigration courts around the country, thousands of children act as their own lawyers, pleading for asylum or other type of relief in a legal system they do not understand.

Suspected killers, kidnappers and others facing federal felony charges, no matter their ages, are entitled to court-appointed lawyers if they cannot afford them. But children accused of violating immigration laws, a civil offense, do not have the same right. Immigration court is, in fact, the only court in the United States where the government has no obligation to provide lawyers for poor children and adults, legal experts say…

Having a lawyer makes a difference. Between October 2004 and June of this year, more than half the children who did not have lawyers were deported. Only one in 10 children who had legal representation were sent back…

Ever get a chance, ask the Deportment of so-called Justice why they insist on defending regulations promulgated by pimp politicians instead of working for justice for the needy?

Ask one of your elected representatives in Congress. You may have to explain the question.

Leave your job in crap shape — take your car and chauffeur along!

Anshu Jain, who stepped down as Deutsche Bank AG co-chief executive officer at the end of June, received 2.2 million euros ($2.5 million) of severance pay and can keep a chauffeured car at the company’s expense until he leads another firm.

The payout comprises “compensation payments for non-competition agreed in the employment contract,” Deutsche Bank said in a statement on Friday. The 53-year-old was also awarded a one-time insurance amount related to pension plan benefits of 1.5 million euros.

❝ “While this may look overly generous, it probably has made it easier for Deutsche Bank to deal with another distraction and get on with the monumental job of getting back on track,” said Christopher Wheeler, a London-based analyst at Atlantic Equities LLP. “It’s clear Deutsche Bank wanted to respect what he had achieved in ensuring the best split possible and avoid a lot of ‘noise’ around the move…”

Jain, who helped build Deutsche Bank into a fixed-income powerhouse in two decades at the company, stepped down in June amid a series of top-level shuffles across European banks. His successor, John Cryan, took over running a lender plagued by billions of euros in legal costs tied to misconduct and doubts over strategy.

So, he screwed up what he did and you’re afraid he may make it worse.

Jain will have use of an office and secretarial support as well as the chauffeur-driven car “to use to a reasonable extent until June 30, 2017, at the latest or until he assumes another position of professional activity in a leadership function,” the bank said. He consulted for Deutsche Bank through 2015.

The lender said it has assumed the 382,000 euros of costs incurred for legal advice provided to Jain in connection with the termination agreement. Any costs incurred for tax advice provided in connection with compensation and benefits resulting from his employment relationship with the bank will be paid until the end of June next year.

The article notes this golden parachute may “send a negative signal to the firm’s employees as they face layoffs and bonus cuts”. NSS. I’d be royally pissed.

ICD-10 Follies — Injured in an Opera House?

brunhilde

It is 208 days before the move to ICD-10 becomes a must-do. Lest the deadline slip your mind, MedPage Today is spotlighting some of those thousands of new codes that might just be getting a bit too granular.

Today’s code:

Y92.253: Opera house as the place of occurrence of the external cause (This is one gem from a laundry list of odd places where one can be hurt, including an art gallery.)

Other “Follies”

X52: Prolonged stay in weightless environment

V98.2XXA: Accident to, on, or involving ice yacht, initial encounter

W30.3XXA: Contact with grain storage elevator, initial encounter

W21.04: Struck by golf ball

W56.21xD: Bitten by orca, subsequent encounter

Z62.891: Sibling rivalry

V97.33XD: Sucked into jet engine, subsequent encounter

W61.92: Struck by other birds

Z63.1: Problems in relationship with in-laws

W45.8XXA: Other foreign body or object entering through skin, initial encounter

V52.2XXA: Person on outside of pick-up truck or van injured in collision with two- or three-wheeled motor vehicle in nontraffic accident, initial encounter

V00.32: Snow-ski accident

X92.0: Assault by drowning and submersion while in bathtub

W00.1: Fall from stairs and steps due to ice and snow

Sit back, my friends and reflect upon how much of America’s modern legislative system exists only to provide full employment for lawyers. Not the best ones, either.

Pharmaceutical corporation lawyers have gay juror removed

A multibillion dollar case between two giant pharmaceutical companies grappling over arcane antitrust issues has unexpectedly turned into a gay rights legal imbroglio that raises questions over whether lawyers can bounce potential jurors solely based on their sexual orientation.

The case before the ninth US circuit court of appeals in San Francisco on Wednesday centers on whether Abbott Laboratories broke antitrust laws when it increased the price of its popular and vital Aids drug Norvir by 400% in 2007. But broader public attention likely will be given to the three-judge panel’s look at whether Abbott wrongfully removed a juror in the case brought by competitor SmithKline Beecham…

“It’s a big deal,” said Vik Amar, University of California, Davis law professor. “The headlines from this case are going to be about antitrust law – it will be about sexual orientation in the jury pool…”

The US supreme court in 1986 prohibited lawyers from using their challenges to bounce a potential juror from a case because of race.

Eight years later, the high court outlawed gender as potential basis for jurors’ exclusion from a trial.

But the high court has never ruled on sexual orientation. The California supreme court has barred the removal of gays from jury pools without justification since 2000, but its rulings aren’t binding on federal courts…

SmithKline is joined by gay rights activists Lambda Legal and other public interest groups who filed their own legal argument urging the court to protect gays from getting bounced from juries for no reason.

The discrimination at issue here is particularly harmful, because it reinforces historical invidious discrimination within the court system and undermines the integrity of the judicial system,” Lambda wrote the court.

The ethics of many lawyers, what passes for ethics in many corporations, are already sufficiently suspect. Add in the long-standing American tradition of bigotry and discrimination against folks who don’t fit the cast-iron mold of Judeo-Christian sex – and we have the makings of a precedent case.

We’ll also get to experience hour after boring hours of legal tap-dancing as the scumbags defending Abbott Labs try to avoid responsibility for their tactics.

Out-of-work law school grads do what they were trained to do. File suits against their law school!

Dozens of law graduates across the nation have joined class-action lawsuits alleging that law schools lured them in with misleading reports of their graduates’ success.

Instead of working in the law, some of the graduates were toiling at hourly jobs in department stores and restaurants and struggling to pay back more than $100,000 in loans used to finance their education. Others were in temporary or part-time legal positions…

Nearly 20 lawsuits — five of them against California schools — are being litigated at a time of dim employment prospects for lawyers. Much of the work once done by lawyers can now be done more quickly by computers.

Online services have made law libraries largely unnecessary, allowing corporations to do more work in-house. Software has sped the hunt for information needed in discovery and other legal tasks, and Web-based companies offer litigants legal documents and help in filling them out. Even after the economy improves, some experts believe the supply of lawyers will outstrip jobs for years to come…

New and inexperienced lawyers, unable to find jobs at law firms, are opening private practices, potentially putting clients at risk, according to a California bar report issued in February. To confront “serious issues of public protection,” a bar task force has recommended requiring practical experience as a condition of a license. The California Supreme Court would eventually have to approve the new rules…

But not everyone shares the dismal outlook. Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of UC Irvine Law School, said his students are finding full-time jobs as lawyers even during this slow economy.

“It is not the same across all law schools when you look at employment prospects,” he said.

Rudy Hasl, dean of the Thomas Jefferson School of Law, said the retirement of baby boomers also would open up jobs.

Both deans said there was huge unmet demand for legal services for the poor and middle class, and the next generation of practitioners might be able to fill that demand. The state bar agrees.

“Across the country, the need for legal services among those who cannot pay or have limited ability to pay has never been higher,” the bar report said.

Which negates the obvious reason why many of these folks became lawyers. They watch reality TV and figured on having that S-class Mercedes and a trophy spouse on their arm at the country club cotillion in a couple of years. For them, pay is what it’s all about. I wouldn’t take a welding course unless I knew how real chances were I could use it. But, that’s because I always knew I had to earn a living.

I’ve been fortunate enough to know more than a couple of good-hearted lawyers. Those who pursued the craft with an aim to make life a little bit better for ordinary folks confronting a society that couldn’t care if you died of a biblical plague from rotten food.

The rest?

Baker Street a battleground anew – a war over Sherlock Holmes

Devotees of Sherlock Holmes are a famously obsessive bunch, and in the 126 years since Arthur Conan Doyle introduced his coolheaded detective they have certainly had plenty of real-world intrigues to ponder alongside fictional ones like “The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle.”

There have been fierce battles over control of Conan Doyle’s estate and the preservation of his former home in Surrey, England — to say nothing of the wild speculations surrounding the mysterious 2004 death of a prominent Holmes scholar who was found garroted with a shoelace shortly before a controversial auction of Conan Doyle papers.

But when the Baker Street Irregulars, an invitation-only literary club, gathered for their annual weekend in New York in January, few had any inkling they would soon be embroiled in a distinctly 21st-century case that might be called “The Adventure of the Social Media-Driven Copyright Debate, With Annotations on Sherlockian Sexism and the True Nature of Literary Devotion.”

A few weeks later, after a leading Holmes scholar and longtime Irregular filed a legal complaint against the Conan Doyle estate arguing that Sherlock Holmes and the basic elements of his world were in the public domain, various online Sherlockian conclaves exploded.

“The suit has wreaked havoc,” said Betsy Rosenblatt, an assistant professor at Whittier Law School and a member of the Irregulars, who pointed to the spread of a “#freesherlock” hashtag on Twitter.

The suit, which stems from the estate’s efforts to collect a licensing fee for a planned collection of new Holmes-related stories by Sara Paretsky, Michael Connelly and other contemporary writers, makes a seemingly simple argument. Of the 60 Conan Doyle stories and novels in “the Canon” (as Sherlockians call it), only the 10 stories first published in the United States after 1923 remain under copyright. Therefore, the suit asserts, many fees paid to the estate for the use of the character have been unnecessary.

But it’s also shaping up to be something of what one blogger called “a Sherlockian Civil War.” On one side is Leslie S. Klinger, a prominent lawyer from Malibu, Calif., and the editor of the three-volume, nearly 3,000-page “New Annotated Sherlock Holmes,” as well as an editor of the new collection. On the other is Jon Lellenberg, a retired Defense Department strategist and, for the past 30 years, the Conan Doyle estate’s hard-nosed American agent.

If neither side is ready to cast the other in the role of Professor Moriarty, Holmes’s arch-nemesis, the tide of sympathy among Sherlockians is running strongly in Mr. Klinger’s favor.

RTFA. Like any successful detective story the evidence trail may lead your opinion in many more than one direction.

I admit to being sufficiently devoted to the point that my best and favorite holiday, bicycle-camping from Connecticut to the Canadian border in New Hampshire, crossing the autumn color-change, included only a paperback collection of Sherlock Holmes for reading matter. The modern world could have vanished during that journay and I might not have noticed.

Scumballs never stop — patent troll claims to own the Web

Even after Amazon and Google put two bullets into its head earlier this year, overgrown patent troll Eolas is stumbling forward with new lawsuits against Facebook, Wal-Mart and Disney.

Eolas is a shell company that had been stomping around the country demanding companies pay it to use basic technology that lets users “interact” with the web. It suffered what looked like a fatal blow earlier this year when Amazon and other Eolas targets persuaded a Texas jury that two of its patents were invalid.

Nonetheless, Eolas has dusted itself off and filed new claims based on the same patents plus two more that are offshoots from the original patent issued in 1998. That patent…is entitled “Distributed hypermedia method for automatically invoking external application providing interaction and display of embedded objects within a hypermedia document.”

Eolas’ legal rampage led the man regarded as the inventor of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee, to testify in February that its patents should be invalid.

The troll’s activities have also proved controversial because the University of California has been its partner in the patent lawsuits. A spokesperson told Reuters, which was first to report the Facebook suit, that the school considered the patents public assets and that it “should be paid a fair value when a third party exploits that university asset for profit.”

…McKool Smith…The law firm, which has won hundreds of millions in Texas troll cases through commissions of up to 40 percent, has seen its fortunes turn in the last year.

Fortunately.

Creeps like this prove the US Patent Office has gone from incompetent to useless and a partner in criminal conspiracies.

Though one of the cardinal requirements of this kind of theft is a patent office that knows nothing of technology, the many judges and courts cooperating in this crap are equally corrupt and fill the needs of legal extortion with their ignorance.