**********The City of Angels is Everywhere*********

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

I Have to Say This: We Lost in LA, the Church Used its Endless Wealth to Bulldoze Plaintiffs, Attorneys, Even Judges, Fight Still Being Fought Today

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By Kay Ebeling

If anyone sues you and wants to take your tunic, let him have your coat also. -- Matthew 5:40

I walked into Department 20 this morning and there was Plaintiff Liaison Attorney Tony DeMarco in the front row his face still beating red and articulating anger as he waited for his clergy case hearing to be called. Here plaintiffs have been trying to get documents from the Oblates of Mary Immaculate Incorporated and in today's hearing yet another new church attorney explained, “He thinks the US Province and Western are one and the same when in fact they're two different entities and the Western Province was never served summons.”

Speaking through his teeth, DeMarco said, “Now that I’m being educated about the Western Province I’ll serve them. We served the order in Washington DC in 2005 when this case was released.” Motion was granted. This new church attorney who represents the Oblates will now be so cooperative, we are led to believe.

I haven’t written a post in almost a week as truth is since July 16th I’ve been walking around with my mouth hanging open feeling, well, unsettled after the $660 million dollar settlement. Truth is I feel like the church won a major victory in LA, that the plaintiffs and even the judge just caved under the nonstop onslaught of motions and arguments coming out of the 18-plus and counting law firms hired to fight the plaintiffs in these cases.

I don't like having to write that I think we lost, but if I don't write that I can’t seem to write anything else. So yeah, the church money and power plowed down everybody, the entire Superior Court system in LA just caved in to the Archdiocese.

The church won in LA by hiring enough attorneys to perform a kind of legal obstruction of justice. I watched in the weeks before the first trial, plaintiff attorneys would come before the judge numerous times asking for an order to compel a defense witness to testify in deposition. The judge would grant the order and a few weeks later plaintiffs would be before the judge again, now saying they need an order to compel the witness to answer all the questions in the deposition, because his church attorney won’t allow him to answer. This time there would be a new attorney from a new law firm before the judge representing defendant archdiocese or whatever order was in question, new attorneys kept appearing all the time.

Being a new attorney he he could say, gee, judge, I don't know what he’s talking about, problems getting the defendant witness to answer? We'll be glad to comply. Two months later the plaintiff attorney is before the judge now asking for a discovery referee because that defense hierarchy witness now has another lawyer and none of the questions are being answered.

I watched Katherine Freberg try one way after another for more than a year to get definitive answers out of Cardinal Mahony to Interrogatories 1-8, and as the Caffoe and Hagenbach cases jury trials approached for which those interrogatory answers were needed, the judge seems to have accepted answers written by Monsignor Gonzales instead of Cardinal Mahony, what else could plaintiffs and the judge do but -- cave? It was obvious the untouchable Roger Cardinal Mahony was never going to answer a question under oath.

One after another cases got struck and dismissed as members of the 18-plus law firms representing the church and 18-plus orders began a buck passing routine. One order could pass responsibility to another and that one passed it to another, each found ways to use that very confusion about which order was responsible for what -- to get the cases dismissed.

And there were church attorneys in court just this morning continuing the same routine.

After this:
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We're Not Denying You Were Molested by a Priest, but You Filed the Papers with the Wrong Order
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Case Dismissed

We're not denying that the molestation took place, reads several of the motions to quash and dismiss filed by the church, we're just saying plaintiff served the subpoena on the wrong entity and by the time plaintiff realized we were hiding over here under the auspices of a different entity, the Statute of Limitations had run out.

Nyah, nyah, nyah

Good thing I go to a Scripture based Anger Management class, where I saw this: in Matthew 5:40 quoting Jesus himself it says: “If anyone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your coat also.” And you know what you've gotta laugh. . .\

That scripture comes directly after the Gospel about turning the other cheek. I don't know where in Scripture it says to hire as many attorneys as you can to not only keep the truth from coming out but to keep from even getting a stain on the tunic.

The church created loopholes that ended up in plaintiff cases being dismissed, taking advantage of its own confusing structure to keep plaintiffs from knowing who the real culprits were. Most of the time those loopholes were the result of the miasma of religious orders, seminaries, schools and parishes that make up the Los Angeles Archdiocese, that now in 2007 the archdiocese has conveniently disconnected itself from, creating a miasma out of the clergy cases themselves.

It was four or five main plaintiff attorney firms running on their own resources, versus this never ending list of new law firms, one after the other, signing on as church attorneys, one whole firm assigned to help out each individual order, each individual parish. The amount of cash spent by the archdiocese to fight the plaintiffs in these cases would be illegal in a rational world. But it’s America in 2007 and the person with the most cash wins. The plaintiffs are lucky they were able to get what they got -- enough money to maybe buy a condo and get some dental work done. But it was far short of a victory to celebrate.

I went through my notes looking for ways to explain it and found things like this:

March 27 Plaintiffs attorneys filed a Motion for a discovery referee and -- And there still trying to get one by the July 16th settlement. It was March 27th that DeMarco was in court trying to get Monsignor Lirette to give answers in deposition instead of the constant objections from church attorneys to every questions.

DID THEY EVER GET A DEPOSITION FROM LIRETTE:
More after this:

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The fight went on from at least March through July to get a deposition from Monsignor Lirette:

Then there was the nonstop stream of motions to strike and dismiss filed by the hyperactive Lee Potts that ended up with attorneys from both sides arguing in front of the judge and producing transcripts like this from April 24th.

PLAINTIFF ATTORNEY DEMARCO: There have been quite a few motions filed and quite a few folks not getting motions filed because of the service…

CHURCH ATTORNEY POTTS: (getting rattled) We did what's required-- The motion was on the second page and he says he didn't get it --

DEMARCO: It wasn’t faxed, emailed personally delivered, mailed. Case management is not exactly crystal clear on that point.

JUDGE HALEY FROMHOLZ: This is an argument for another day, (he’s thrown his hands up in the air as he speaks).

JUDGE: (Glares at Potts) You may not be aware of it

POTTS: (Laughs nervously)

JUDGE: I’ve had a constant stream of motions to dismiss based on certificates of merit.

DEMARCO: We'll raise it in a different context--

JUDGE: Mr. Potts, there was another one taken off calendar yesterday because of the same arguments, certificates of merit.

DEMARCO: We had provided them with an answer, we had provided those certificates some time back and re-provided again and Mr. Potts was cordial enough to take this one motion off the calendar -- it wasn’t for a lack of diligence.

JUDGE: Please be mindful of that gentlemen.


Just today in I believe that same case, the judge decided to grant the motion to strike and dismiss because of confusion over those same certificates of merit.

(I don't claim to understood all of this. )
In fact last few times I've gone document diving it all just started to swirl and confuse me

Imagine what it does to a mainstream media reporter. . .

I watched church attorneys stand in front of the judge and repeat over and over arguments that the judge had already overruled. It was going to go on and on and on with no resolution for maybe two more years and more cases being thrown out.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs tried to take depositions from critical defense witnesses for months and made little progress, because of church attorneys literally blocking doors (or arranging to have doors blocked). Katherine Freberg tried for almost a year to get definitive answers from Roger Mahony in written interrogatories and a week before the trial the judge gave in and accepted non-answers from Mahony’s Gonzales, Monsignor Gonzales, as the best we're ever going to get out of Mahony. It was a way to avoid having to postpone yet another trial yet another time, as answers to the interrogatories were necessary for the Hagenbach trials set to start July 9th.

But truth is Mahony never had to answer those interrogatories and it was obvious he was never going to.

Instead we had hearings with arguments like this before the judge from April 24:

CHURCH ATTORNEY LEE POTTS: We did what's required, your honor (getting rattled)

PLAINTIFF ATTORNEY TONY DEMARCO: The motion wasn’t faxed, emailed personally delivered, mailed. Case management is not exactly crystal clear on that point.

FROMHOLZ: This is an argument for another day, (he’s thrown his hands up in the air as he speaks.) You may not be aware of it

LEE POTTS: Laughs

FROMHOLZ: I’ve had a constant stream of motions to dismiss based on certificates of merit. Mr. Potts there, was another one taken off calendar yesterday because of the same arguments.


Plaintiffs were never going to get cooperation from the defendants.

It was better to throw in the towel and take whatever settlement they could get in July because by September and October things would just be worse. The church would just hire more attorneys and file more redundant motions and find more excuses for “hierarchy” witnesses to not testify, until all the hierarchy witnesses with anything to say have died from old age, natural causes.

This is as good as it’s going to get in LA. And me, I’m unsettled.

I’m not even settled with this post but I have to just post it and then move on.


Coming soon: Review of “Sacrilege” by Leon J. Podles, new very revealing book about the aiding and abetting pedophiles in the church all over the country .

More To Come. . .


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3 comments:

Spring said...

Kay
Unfortunately you are "right on the money" (pun intended) with respect to your analysis of the tactics, intentions and results of the "only true church". What should be clear to any observer is this only confirms the plaintiffs allegations with respect to the coverup by the "representatives of Dog on Earth".
If we are not bold enough to ban teachings based on "faith". Then we must at least tax all non church finantial activities. It is simple, If they are for the direct purpose of providing the propaganda required by the "religion" they remain exempt. If they are business transactions for profit they are taxed as such. All special laws, loopholes and taxpayer givaways are to be terminated immediately. You cant have separation and favoritism at the same time.
Your blog is the light in the wilderness. The goddess smiles.
Windancer
Springbrooke

city of angels lady said...

My perpetrator's file was turned over by his Order, and I have looked through it. It has been totally sanitized. There is no reference to any sexual abuse in the over 50 years during which he was a Jesuit, despite 5 known victims whose veracity they are not disputing. Even more telling is the lack of any reference to his problem with alcoholism, which they orally characterized as 'severe.' But, because the case has settled, there is little incentive, and even less traction, to force compliance through the judicial process.
Udo

city of angels lady said...

Udo sent me this and asked to leave it as a comment:

"My perpetrator's file was turned over by his Order, and I have looked through it. It has been totally sanitized. There is no reference to any sexual abuse in the over 50 years during which he was a Jesuit, despite 5 known victims whose veracity they are not disputing. Even more telling is the lack of any reference to his problem with alcoholism, which they orally characterized as 'severe.' But, because the case has settled, there is little incentive, and even less traction, to force compliance through the judicial process."
--Udo