Articles Posted in Electronic Disovery

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A continuing legal education company headed by Joseph Marino (inset, left), the legendary force behind a 65-year-old family-owned New York and New Jersey bar exam course, sued a former employee for alleged theft of “invaluable data” from his more recent CLE company’s business.

The Marino Institute of Continuing Legal Education, Inc. (‘Marino’ CLE’) accuses ex-employee Omar Issa (inset, right) of lifting Marino CLE trade secrets, breaching a fiduciary duty to his employer “by taking technology and…leaking confidential information and proprietary information” to his competing business while still working for Marino CLE


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If you think that texting is so ’90s, guess again.

A new criminal case against former BP employee Kurt Mix is an important reminder that, while social networks like Facebook and Twitter may be all the rage, deleting work-related text messages from your mobile phone might get you in trouble with the law.

Especially if prosecutors can prove that you obstructed justice by hiding something from a criminal investigation. In Mix’s case, the investigation involved BP’s deadly Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.


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The federal judge presiding over the lawsuit by plaintiff Paul Ceglia, the convicted felon claiming to own half of Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook, just ordered Google to divulge Ceglia’s Gmail account data and logs by March 5, 2012

Ceglia’s email accounts are at the heart of this lawsuit. Some were known, many were only recently discovered by lawyers for Zuckerberg and Facebook after an electronic forensics investigator learned about four previously previously unknown webmail accounts held by Ceglia. The electronic discovery could shed light on whether or not the contract he claims gives him a fifty-percent ownership stake in Facebook is real, or the fabrication that Facebook and Zuckerberg’s lawyers say it is.


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The U.S. Magistrate Judge overseeing Paul Ceglia’s ownership claim case against Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook ordered Ceglia to pay nearly $76,000 in attorneys’ fees to Facebook’s and Zuckerberg’s lawyers for having to repeatedly go to court to compel Cegila to comply with the judge’s earlier orders.

That is in addition to the $5,000 in sanctions that a judge order Ceglia to pay last month.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Leslie G. Foschio’s only reduced the $84,196 that Facebook sought in attorneys’ fees by 10% in order “to ‘trim’ any ‘fat.'”

Magistrate Judge Foschio’s 39-page decision and order (you can read it below) painstakingly details the legal morass that this litigation has become.


Tagged: Paul Ceglia

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In pre-Super Bowl style, prosecutors charged a Michigan man with criminal copyright violations for allegedly operating nine (9) websites chock full of pirated sports broadcast videos (read the complaint below).

Separately, federal agents also seized a purported $4.8 million in knock-off Super Bowl merchandise imported into the U.S.

The U.S. Attorney’s message? Don’t risk any high-tech copyright shenanigans with unauthorized streams of this Sunday’s Super Bowl XLVI.


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A lawsuit filed by current and former employees of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration charges that the agency accessed and spied on their personal e-mail accounts after scientists and doctors alerted Congress and the media that certain radiation-emitting computer detection devices may not be safe or effective.

The lawsuit filed by scientists and doctors charges that nine FDA employees (the “FDA Nine”) had their private, personal, password protected email accounts on Google and Yahoo secretly recorded by the the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the government agency to which the FDA reports.

Why? Because the FDA scientists and doctors engaged in whistleblower-protected conduct by voicing concerns about radiation-induced cancer risks allegedly involving medical devices that the agency regulated.


Tagged: email, FDA, HHS

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The Supreme Court ruled today that the government cannot use warrantless GPS tracking devices because doing so violates a suspect’s Fourth Amendment rights against unwarranted search and seizure.

Writing for the Court, Justice Scalia held:

that the Government’s installation of a GPS device on a target’s vehicle, and its use of that device to monitor the vehicle’s movements, constitutes a “search”

in violation of the Fourth Amendment.


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A Freedom of Information Act (‘FOIA’) lawsuit (below) by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (‘EPIC’) reveals that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security paid contractors to monitor Facebook, Twitter other social networks, blogs, and comments on news media websites.

The documents (below) disclose that the federal government paid at least $1.16 million to private contractor General Dynamics to monitor social networks, blogs, and news media sites for “public reaction to major governmental proposals with homeland security implications.” That’s government bureaucratic-speak for public dissent.

The legal implications of U.S. social networking surveillance programs tracking dissent of its own citizens, even with open source tools, are deeply disturbing.


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Another New York trial court judge recently denied a defense discovery request for access to plaintiffs’ Facebook profiles.

New York State Supreme Court Justice Philip G. Minardo, sitting on Staten Island, ruled in Temperino v. Turner Construction Co., et al. that “[t]he mere claim that plaintiffs were members of FACEBOOK, in and of itself, is not a sufficient basis” for the court to issue a subpoena for the opposing parties’ Facebook records. (Read the complete decision below)


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Tensions could reach a new high point today in the Facebook ownership claim lawsuit between plaintiff, convicted felon Paul Cegilia (inset), and Defendants Facebook and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg.

A court hearing today in Buffalo, New York is scheduled to consider no less than eight (8) motions with roughly eighty (80) pleadings on among them on the court docket.

What are they all about?