mercredi 13 janvier 2016

Court orders deadline for homophobic Mississippi blogger to answer sanctions motion for vexatious litigation

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississipp immediately responded to a motion from Handshoe's former litigation opponent, process server Chris Yount. Within one day, Judge Keith Starrett has set a deadline by which Handshoe must answer Yount's request for sanctions against Handshoe, including possibly enjoining him from filing more lawsuits. The Mississippi blogger's case against Yount and Daniel Abel was thrown out in its entirety last week by the judge.

Yount is also asking for return of the money he had to earier pay Handshoe, reimursing him for service costs.
As an exhibit, Yount included an email he received from Handshoe on the same day the homophobic blogger entered a default against his co-defendant Abel. The default move would ultimately cause Judge Starrett to sua sponte issue orders dismissing allegations, and demanding that Handshoe show cause and amend his lawsuit so that it actually stated a proper claim. Handshoe failed on both. The email shows Handshoe threatening to sue Yount's minor son if Yount did not immediately drop his defamation lawsuit against Handshoe in Louisiana. Handshoe already owes Yount substantial attorney's fees awarded by a decision of the Louisiana Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal last year.

"I will be moving to incude your son . . . as a defendant in the federal court matter," Handshoe wrote to Yount on December 11, 2015, "If you do not move to dismiss the 24th JDC case by close of business Monday, I will be filing to amend this action to include" Yount's son. We will see what the federal judge makes of such a threat, which Handshoe characterized as a "settlement" offer. Suing someone's minor child unless they drop their valid lawsuit against you doesn't look like good faith to  legal observers.

Yount also filed a table he compiled of all the litigation Handshoe has started over the past couple of year, including suing the National Geographic Society for conspiracy, and earlier trying to get an injunction from the Mississippi federal court against the chief judge of New Orleans Civil District Court so that Handshoe would not have to answer discovery requests!  That table, filed as "Exhibit B" can be viewed here and is quite extraordinary.

Handshoe has sued some parties multiple times, often with seemingly overlapping claimsof conspiracy and "abuse of process" as well as misrepresentation under the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. This includes gay couple Charles Leary and Vaughn Perret, who have judgments against Handshoe from Nova Scotia Supreme Court. Handshoe continues to publish homophobic comments on his blog. He had stated on his blog and in court papers that a drawing by Yount's son  showed "a young child being sodomized by a line of robots." This resulted in Yount suing him for defamation (that's not what the drawing depicted). Handshoe, in turn, sued Yount in the case that was just dismissed by Judge Starrett.

Yount also points out in his brief that Handshoe has allegedly diobeyed rules regarding compulsory counterclaims precisely designed so the amount of lawsuits is not multiplied.

Handshoe has until January 29, 2016, to respond. In his final decision in this case, Judge Starrett found Handshoe went beyond the scope of his order, and also misrepresented facts to the court. It looks like Handshoe will have a busy January! Tick tock, tick tock . . . .

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