This post picks up where our last one left off, in a page-by-page review of Sullivan & Cromwell’s Complaint (PDF) in S&C v. Charney. Our earlier thoughts are available here.
Now we’re up to the juiciest part: Paragraph 19. This paragraph concerns a certain confidential, internal firm document, which was leaked to the Wall Street Journal (previously discussed here).
S&C’s Complaint notes that a copy of this document (1) “is missing from [a] partner’s file”; (2) that the partner’s file “appears to have been put out of order”; and (3) that the partner in question had her office “next door to Charney’s office.”
You do the math.
Paragraph 19 also notes that the WSJ Law Blog, in writing about the leaked document, quotes from a handwritten note that was attached to the partner’s missing copy of the document. Charney also quoted from this same handwritten note, in Paragraph 63 of his Complaint. Ruh-Roh…
More after the jump.
P20: Although he wasn’t entitled to access them, Aaron Charney “was [physically] able to access the files containing [the missing] documents.” What we’re thinking is that Charney and the partner in question, S&C litigatrix Stephanie Wheeler, had offices next door to each other and therefore had shared file cabinets. It wouldn’t have been difficult for Charney to do a little snooping through said cabinets.
PP17-19: The Complaint marches through Charney’s public relations campaign, with shout-outs to SqueezePlay, the Canadian TV program that Charney appeared on, and the Wall Street Journal.
But what about Above the Law? Why aren’t we mentioned anywhere in this? C’mon, S&C, you’re hurting our feelings…
P21: “S&C is also aware that Charney e-mailed from his S&C e-mail account to his home e-mail accounts a large number of confidential, sensitive, and non-public documents, as well as S&C work product.”
Sending documents from your work email account to your home account is done by many lawyers, so they can work from home without lugging a laptop around. But if you engage in this practice, you might want to rethink it.
P22: Notes that Charney’s Complaint “quotes from or characterizes confidential S&C performance reviews,” which he “had no legitimate access to.”
Two thoughts: (1) S&C presumably concedes the authenticity of these reviews; and (2) how did Charney get copies of these reviews? One wonders whether he might have received them through partner Stephen Kotran, who comes across in Charney’s Complaint as a Charney ally and sympathizer.
P23: Some interesting and juicy allegations here:
“In late November 2006, Charney also requested his secretary to make two copies of every document in his archived S&C e-mail folders. When the secretary suggested that, given the volume of documents in those folders, it would be more practical to copy the archives to a CD or DVD, but that copying to a CD or DVD would require approval of an S&C partner, Charney refused the suggestion.”
“The secretary began making copies, but decided that the request was suspicious and stopped work, despite repeated requests from Charney to complete the copying effort. Charney had no legitimate business reason to obtain two copies of all of his archived documents.”
We wonder: How much did Aaron Charney give his secretary for a holiday gift?
P24: Reference to the tapes that Charney claims to have in his possession. We can’t WAIT until those come out….
P37: Ooh, replevin! We agree with this comment: “I enjoy the common-law basis of the complaint, e.g., counts for conversion and replevin.”
1. Note the addition of Allan Bloom to the Paul Hastings team representing S&C, which is headed up by Zach Fasman.
(Is Allan Bloom, Esq., any relation to THE Allan Bloom, the great 20th century intellectual?)
2. Note that David Braff is the only S&C partner on the brief, listed as being “Of Counsel.”
One would have expected to see Theodore Rogers in this spot, considering that Ted Rogers, a labor and employment litigator at S&C, has been actively involved in the case. But the shout-out to Dave Braff is a smart move on S&C’s part. Braff, you will recall, is the openly gay S&C partner who has declared that ‘’I’ve been openly gay since I arrived at this firm in 1984 . . . ‘There’s absolutely no atmosphere of hostility toward gay people here.’’
If this case goes to trial, expect David Braff to be seated prominently at counsel table, in a pink feather boa.
Provided by S&C litigation partner Richard Klapper. Presumably Klapper, along with Braff and Rogers, is on the in-house S&C team involved in dealing with this matter.
This is going to be wickedly interesting and fun. Thank you, Sullivan & Cromwell, for suing Aaron Charney — and creating such a glorious clusterf**k of a case!!!
Earlier: Sullivan & Cromwell v. Charney: S&C’s Complaint
Sullivan & Cromwell v. Charney: A Few Thoughts on the S&C Complaint (Part 1)