Baseball

Derek Jeter is retiring. If you follow sports, you know that one of the most overrated players in history is calling it quits. If you don’t follow sports, you probably also know this.

A few days ago, Jeter hit a foul ball (he has problems hitting balls in play at this point). Blue Jays third baseman Danny Valencia threw the ball to a dad, who gave it to his daughter, who promptly threw the ball back because little kids like to throw things.

UPDATE (9/25/2014, 4:56 p.m.): The embed appears to be broken. We will continue to try and fix it. In the meantime, the video is available here:


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Turns out, the dad in that video — who ultimately got the ball back — is a Biglaw lawyer! Work/life balance for the win….

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Barry Bonds was convicted of obstruction of justice for giving non-responsive answers to questions in a grand jury. As Judge Fletcher told the government in the oral argument in the 9th Circuit en banc challenge to his conviction, “I find your reading of the [obstruction of justice] statute absolutely alarming.” And for good reason — Judge Fletcher thinks that the government’s interpretation of obstruction of justice would mean that most civil lawyers are felons.

There are a lot of ways to violate federal laws that are related to obstruction of justice. You can lie to a federal agent who is coming to your house to interview you and violate 18 U.S.C. § 1001. You can commit perjury under 18 U.S.C. § 1621. And there are a host of other false statement statutes specific to other regulatory schemes (like false statements in connection with a tax filing, or a health care request for payment, etc.).

All of those laws, though, require that the person who is being prosecuted make a false statement.

Obstruction of justice is different. Instead of having concrete elements like “making a false statement”, obstruction of justice criminalizes willfully “obstruct[ing], imped[ing], or interfer[ing] with” whatever is being allegedly obstructed.

Here, Barry Bonds didn’t make a false statement. Instead, he gave an answer that was non-responsive. The government’s theory was that Barry Bonds didn’t give a responsive answer to a question in order to throw the government off (because, apparently, having the temerity to force an AUSA to listen to questions in a grand jury and ask a follow-up question is the kind of thing that ought to brand you a felon).

And that was “obstructing” the federal law enforcement apparatus.

There are a lot of things wrong with this prosecution. The one I want to focus on is the lengths the federal government will go to in order to protect AUSAs from having to do the same basic work that the rest of the legal community does routinely.

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I find your reading of the [obstruction of justice] statute absolutely alarming.

– Judge William Fletcher, not exactly expressing confidence in federal prosecutors. The Ninth Circuit sat en banc to review Barry Bonds’s conviction for obstruction of justice, and all indications suggest the former slugger will have his conviction overturned.

If you’re interested in watching the entire oral argument, it’s available below…

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Note that Mr. & Mrs. Met have an old-fashioned, traditional marriage just like the front office wants.

Mets. Incompetent? Sexist? Both?

These are the questions asked in a new lawsuit filed yesterday in the Eastern District of New York. In fairness, the first question shouldn’t really be a question assuming a passing understanding of baseball since, say, 1986. I guess there was the year that the NL sent them up to get hammered into submission by the Yankees (who let them win a game!), but no one writes epic songs about cannon fodder. If you haven’t been following the ongoing train wreck of the damned that is the New York Mets, don’t fret, this new complaint can bring you up to speed.

Because the best part of the complaint is its blistering account of just how bad the Mets are at the whole “baseball” thing.

A former Mets executive, Leigh Castergine, is suing the Mets and Jeff Wilpon, the Chief Operating Officer for discrimination, retaliation, and a violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act. Castergine was charged with boosting ticket sales, so a substantial question surrounding her dismissal will be whether she was a failure at her job or whether she was set up to fail.

It’s not shocking to believe that any obstacles she encountered stemmed from incompetence in the front office and on the field.

What is shocking are the allegations detailing the verbal and emotional abuse Castergine took from Wilpon and those acting under his management….

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* Robert Manfred Jr., formerly a partner of Morgan Lewis & Bockius, is now the commissioner of Major League Baseball, and he beat out another former Biglaw buddy from Kelley Drye & Warren to snag the job. [Am Law Daily]

* “My past is littered with the bones of men who were foolish enough to think I was someone they could sleep on.” Michele Roberts is the first lady to lead the NBAPU, and you don’t want to mess with her. [New York Times]

* In case you haven’t heard by now, Governor Rick Perry was indicted on Friday on felony charges of abusing his power in office. Aww, poor guy. Not for nothing, but we can’t wait to see his mug shot. [New York Times]

* Quinnipiac Law has a new building that cost $50 million, and it’s designed to hold between 400 and 500 students. With only 292 students currently enrolled, that’s a lot of wishful thinking. [New Haven Register]

* “This is a lawsuit against the lawyers for being lawyers, for doing what lawyers do.” It also seems to be a lawsuit that’s allegedly about sex, lies, illegal video tapes… and Waffle House. [Daily Report (reg. req.)]

* Suit filed questioning the parentage of Blue Ivy Carter. Plaintiff claims to be the real… mother? Hm. You’d think that would be pretty easy for everyone to remember. [International Business Times]

* The Washington D.C.-area NFL team has filed suit to get its trademark back. They think the USPTO are Indian Givers. [DCist]

* The ACLU is asking courts to define “freedom of the press” in the wake of Ferguson. I understand their impulse, I just don’t think they’re gonna like the answer. [Fox2Now]

* A 71-year-old lawyer allegedly called two escorts over to his house and they asked for more money. Even for rich lawyers it’s the principle of the thing. [South Florida Lawyers]

* Sad to see Professor Larry Tribe join the “let’s blame the teachers instead of funding public schools” parade. But now that he’s become a high-profile supporter of ending tenure for those teaching the young, perhaps he’ll renounce his own tenure. Or at least fight to revoke it from all his colleagues. [National Law Journal]

* A Colombian lawyer is suing FIFA for $1.3 billion over bad officiating. Of all the things FIFA deserves to get sued over, this isn’t making the list. [Washington Post]

* Congratulations to Rob Manfred, a Harvard Law grad formerly of Morgan Lewis, on his promotion to MLB Commissioner. He will continue the proud tradition of keeping us bored all summer long while we wait for football to come back. [New York Times]

* New lawsuit says Google kept records of plans to infringe intellectual property… on Post-Its. Unwise. Office supplies are for back-to-school shopping, not writing down wrongful acts. [Valleywag]

* If you’re a current 3L or a law grad about to come off a clerkship, NOAA has a job opportunity for you. Imagine how exciting it will be when the next Sharknado happens! [USAJobs via NOAA]

* There’s a company with no revenue and no profit run out of Belize with a $6 billion market cap. And this lawyer might be the reason why. [Fortune]

* The discrimination claim brought by former professor Teresa Wagner against the University of Iowa College of Law must be retried. Congrats, Teresa! Celebrate with a round of shots. [Iowa Appeals]

* Chris Kluwe intends to sue the Minnesota Vikings. He has a good chance because the Vikings can’t beat anybody. [Sports Illustrated]

* Judge Judy is suing a lawyer over advertisements. [ABA Journal]

* A-Rod is being sued by his lawyer for $380,000 in unpaid bills. Life’s hard for multimillionaires when the income stream is temporarily suspended. [NY Daily News]

* Breaking up is hard to do. But it doesn’t have to be difficult to dissolve a law firm ethically if you follow this advice. Dewey know anyone who could have used this advice earlier? [Legal Talk Network]

* Indiana Tech law school is in desperation mode. Who would have seen this coming? [Third Tier Reality]

* The horrors of law school debt are becoming more obvious even to non-students. [Law School Lemmings]

* Jon Stewart chats with Dahlia Lithwick about the Supreme Court. Embed after the jump…. [The Daily Show]

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* For all you surprised by LeBron James, let me remind you: Cleveland is all about two non-consecutive stints. [Wikipedia]

* Speaking of basketball, Mitchell Epner takes his talents to CNBC to breakdown the 5 things he learned during the first week of the Donald Sterling trial. [CNBC]

* Who is the Litigator of the Week, per Litigation Daily? It’s Daniel Gitner of Lankler Siffert & Wohl because he became the first lawyer to beat the S.D.N.Y. U.S.A.O. in an insider trading case. Also because he’s awesome. Pardon me while I put on my LSW shirt. [The Litigation Daily (sub. req.)]

* Hey! Take a second to take our latest law firm survey. We really want your feedback on your perception. [Above the Law]

* “5 Reasons the Sleeping Yankees Fan’s Lawyer Should Be Disbarred.” Fair enough. [Internet on Trial]

* Will the EPA’s latest carbon rule survive judicial challenge? I would have said “no” but after Homer City… [Breaking Energy]

* Do blondes make more money? I guess that’s the trade-off with being the focus of revenge porn. [The Careerist / American Lawyer]

* Aereo is back. Sort of. [Comm Law Blog]

* A former Patton partner lost his new job at Pillsbury over the Chevron case. Could anybody have suffered more over this case? Oh, right, all the Ecuadorians. [Legal Times]

* While you weren’t looking, even fewer people took the LSAT. Obviously. [LSAC]

via Twitter

* According to his former lawyer, The Situation’s tan is as fake as his checks. [Defamer /Gawker]

* The folks at New Republic explain the Notorious R.B.G. phenomenon in such excruciating detail as to make it really kind of awkward. [New Republic]

* Lawyer who asked trainee 78 times to have sex with him and then secretly filmed her around the office gets an eight-month suspension and a fine. Seems like it should be more than that… [The Age]

* Dealing with outfit “compliments” and maintaining your confidence. Frankly, learning how to deal with passive-aggressive jerks is an important skill for any working lawyer. [Corporette]

* Law schools are in trouble, but something’s blocking reform: the ABA. Seriously, this article is probably a shocker if you haven’t been reading ATL for years. [Forbes]

* Day 3 of the Sterling trial: wherein Donald calls his wife a “pig.” [mitchell epner]

* Here’s why law students should care about legal funding. So they don’t screw up funding their cases as much as they did their education. [LFC 360]

* Remember the brutal fan beating last year of a San Francisco Giants fan? A jury finds that the Los Angeles Dodgers acted negligently. [ESPN]

* Corporate litigator leaves her gig to start a “Cat Cafe.” Which is exactly what it sounds like. [Denver Cat Co]

Casey Anthony

* Squire Patton Boggs has announced the new leadership structure of its lobbying and public policy practice. It’s really no surprise that the head honchos of the group hail from the Patton Boggs side of the recent merger. [Politico]

* “It’s funny how the Supreme Court reaches down and picks this case.” The most important digital privacy case of our time just happened to be filed by Stanford Law’s SCOTUS Litigation Clinic. Awesome. [San Jose Mercury News]

* If you’re caught on camera sleeping during a Yankees/Red Sox game, you can probably expect abuse from ESPN announcers. If you call someone an “unintelligent fatty” as an announcer, you can probably expect a $10M defamation suit. [New York Post]

* “I’m proud to do my job.” Madonna finally rescheduled her jury duty session in New York City, but she was dismissed early so as not to create a “further distraction for the courthouse.” [New York Daily News]

* It’s been three years since Casey Anthony was acquitted of her daughter’s murder. Let us remember this most amazing voicemail: “CASEY ANTHONY NEEDS TO ROT IN HELL! SHE NEEDS TO DIE!” [CNN]

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