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December 21st, 2012

Asbestos Racketeers Suffer Huge Loss, Plaintiffs’ Bar PR Campaign Devastated

With the plaintiffs’ bar gearing up a multimillion-dollar public relations and lobbying campaign in 2013 aimed at winning back some of the ground lost to ATRA and other tort reform groups in recent years, a federal jury in West Virginia took just two-and-a-half hours yesterday to return civil verdicts on all counts against two personal injury lawyers and a discredited former physician for conspiring to file fraudulent asbestos claims.

As reported by Daniel Fisher at Forbes.com, the jury in Wheeling “ruled against attorneys Robert Peirce and Louis Raimond” of the Peirce Law Firm in Pittsburgh, “as well as radiologist Ray Harron, a physician who supplied diagnoses for tens of thousands of asbestos claims for plaintiff lawyers. The three were ordered to pay CSX [Transportation Inc.] $429,240.47, which may be tripled under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Practices Act (RICO). CSX will also ask for attorneys fees.”

Judicial Hellholes reporters have closely followed this hugely important case in the past and will offer addtional analysis after the holidays.  Meanwhile, suffice to say, this defeat for those who routinely abuse our civil justice system is the most devastating since tort kingpins Dickie Scruggs, Bill Lerach and Mel Weiss all copped respective guilty pleas to various federal felonies several years ago.  And it will now make virtually impossible the already Herculean PR task of trying to sell personal injury lawyers as warm and fuzzy defenders of the little guy, which is a bit like selling Don Corleone and Carlos the Jackal as warm and fuzzy defenders of the little guy.

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