Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Shorter Gene Stearns: It's All Judge Ungaro's Fault.

I understand there may be a certain amount of settlement posturing to all this, but is Gene going overboard with his very public and very direct "Judge Ungaro screwed up" approach to appealing the BankAtlantic securities verdict?

I mean, this is a guy who already said it was the worst-tried case he's ever seen in his life, and that includes every episode of Judge Judy plus that old Boston judge from The Verdict (ok, I added the last part).

In today's DBR, Stearns continues to focus exclusively on Judge Ungaro:
"I don't blame the jury," Stearns said. "The judge instructed them that Alan Levan made four false statements. And that is, I believe, unprecedented for a judge to tell the jury that one of the defendants made false statements."
Gene also didn't like how the Judge handled the damages expert:
Stearns said Preston's testimony about damages rested on several factual assumptions that the jury did not assess: "The judge refused to allow the jury to decide the factual questions upon which her testimony was predicated. Very puzzling."
Puzzling?  It's downright perplexing!

 In their response, posted here, the plaintiffs take this argument head on:
Even though the Court was not required to submit a special interrogatory regarding Preston’s assumptions to the jury, the jury clearly had the opportunity to consider and reject the assumptions. Preston’s assumptions (found at paragraph 10 of her report, PX726) were published to the jury during her testimony. Trial Transcript (“Tr.”) 2668-69. Defendants vigorously cross-examined her about the assumptions and the significance if Plaintiffs failed to prove them.6 Moreover, the instructions given by the Court were absolutely clear that unless the jury first found liability the issue of damages was not to be reached (DE 635 at 23) and specified that it was up to the jury to decide whether it would rely on the expert’s opinion. Id. at 6. Given these instructions, it is implicit in the jury verdict awarding damages based on Preston’s testimony that the jurors found that the factual assumptions she relied on were proven.
If Judge Carnes gets this, given his penchant for quoting old song lyrics, I hope he updates his references a bit (I've given him a hint above).


  1. Look in the mirror.

  2. i agree with gene that judge ungaro is the worst federal judge we have in this district . . .

    and its not even close.

  3. Agreeing with eugene or not, is not the point of the post

    the question is, does gene's tantrum serve his client?

    Ursula is not the worst judge in this district. Not even close. She can be abrasive. She can decide issues a bit quickly (but she frequently revists her decisions after reflection and will admit when she is wrong) and she reacts poorly if a lawyer has one speed, is incapable of letting things from the bench roll off his back and staying focused on the task at hand and how to deal with what is thrown his way, because the lawyer must always prace around the courtroom and try and exert control due to an inferiority conplex resulting in a over inflated ego.

  4. Dog, why'd you dis me???

    How you can grant the woman access to your villa?
    Trespasser and a witness while you cling on your pillow
    You better watch your back before she turn into a killer
    Best for you and the situation not to call the beaner

    To be a true player you have to know how to play
    If she say you're not, convince her say you're gay
    Never admit to a word when she say
    Makes a claim and you tell her baby no way

  5. How can you accuse Judge Ungaro of being the worst judge in the District? How is that going to make Judge Seitz feel?

  6. is judge seitz really a judge? she wasn't even a real lawyer

  7. The plaintiffs' service list fails to comply with the local rules -- it doesn't include a statement about how service was effected (presumably through CM/ECF).

    Just saying.

  8. 8:59 is a huge toolbox.

  9. 3:39 is (or was) Judge Ungaro's clerk