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Leonidas Update March 30, 2015

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Today, as the former bargaining agent (FBA) conducted a BPR meeting in CLT, one topic likely discussed was the LMRDA lawsuit filed against current/former National officers and various BPR reps. These defendants were sued as individuals, meaning, each individual was sent a copy of the complaint and was asked to acknowledge receipt of said complaint. This is what is known in any suit as “service of process,” and doing it via certified mail is the method most preferred by the courts because it saves time and expense. To date, most of the individual defendants responded via this method but there were a few holdouts. Of course, the law provides for such contingencies and service of process can be affected in a number of different ways, including being served personally by what is known as a “process server.” The remaining defendants will be served soon. 

 

The crux of the LMRDA suit is over the duty of the officers to wrap up the business of the former bargaining agent and disgorge the dues collected from pilots when it was the certified collective bargaining agent – a function that USAPA cannot fulfill by law any longer. 

 

To review the timeline of this case, the complaint was filed on February 23rd, and you can download that complaint here. The case was assigned to Judge Max Cogburn of the Federal District of North Carolina. Judge Cogburn ruled on March 6th that our case was actionable under the LMRDA, and you can read his order here. Also on March 6th, a demand letter was sent to USAPA counsel demanding once again that USAPA’s officers wrap up the business and disgorge the millions of dollars back to the pilots of unused dues money. You can read this demand letter here. On March 13th, our LMRDA suit was reassigned to Judge John Conrad of the same federal district court. Recall that Judge Conrad was the judge who presided over US Airways’ injunction against USAPA for the East’s illegal job action in 2011. (You can download that order here.) 

 

So, as we are now waiting for formal service on a few remaining defendants, the case will proceed before Judge Conrad. Of course, if the newly elected USAPA officers do not fulfill their fiduciary duties after they take office in mid-April, then most likely our complaint will need to be amended to include them as Defendants also. The new Officers/Reps terms take effect April 18th. Apparently, some of the named defendants who are leaving their USAPA officer positions believe that their vacating somehow absolves them of liability from their actions or from the reach of the law. This is not the case, they can not hide from their past actions, so trying to hide will not be fruitful. 

 

On March 27th, our counsel filed a Motion for Temporary Restraining Order or Preliminary Injunction, before Judge Conrad. You can read this motion here. We will reiterate just what was stated in the previous demand letters: give us our money back. That’s all this LMRDA suit is about. With the filing of this lawsuit, each day and each decision that the officers of the FBA delay, obstruct and deny what their legal and ethical duties obligate them to do, will expose each of them to personal liability. 

 

In closing, we thank those who have and continue to support the legal front by supporting our legal team. Your continued support with the “Push Campaign” is and will be our main source of funding the legal front. Please sign up, here, to be part of the “Push Campaign” 

 

Thank you, 

 

 

Leonidas, LLC 

 

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Leonidas Update March 06, 2015

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Many events have occurred over the past year with regard to the MOU, JCBA, and USAPA (Former Bargaining Agent - FBA) being decertified on September 16, 2014. That was a good day for PHX based pilots. 

 

West pilots are no longer under the tyranny of a hostile union that was created to disenfranchise a minority group within the union. Since September 16th, when the NMB de-certified the FBA, attempts were made to resolve the misuse of dues monies and its refusal to dissolve and disburse excess dues. After the first demand letter was issued to the FBA Officers, the new FBA, operating as private unincorporated nonprofit organization, decided to file a Declaratory Judgment lawsuit against Velez and Leonidas. Here is the latest filing with regard to this case, our response against FBA’s request for motion to amend. (here) We will continue to handle this as needed to resolve the legal action in NC against Velez and Leonidas. 

 

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America West Merger Committee Update January 9, 2015

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We are pleased to announce that the Preliminary Arbitration panel has issued an award granting the America West Merger Committee's request to be designated as an independent, autonomous merger committee in the McCaskill-Bond seniority integration process. The Award states, in part:

 

[T]he Board concludes that APA's designation of a West Pilots Merger Committee is consistent with the Protocol and MOU; is consistent with the McCaskill-Bond requirement that the SLI process be fair and equitable; is a proper and reasonable exercise of its discretion; and is fully consistent with APA's duty of fair representation to all Company pilots. Indeed, in this particular case, the Board concludes that fairness and equity demand the appointment of a West Pilot Merger Committee to participate in the SLI process.

 

We have posted the Award on our website at www.west-merger-committee.com.

 

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America West Merger Committee Update January 28, 2015

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We have been busy at work on your behalf over the past three weeks since the Preliminary Arbitration Award, and would like to update you about a few items.

 

WEST MERGER COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN

 

We are pleased to announce that we have officially appointed Captain Russ Payne as Chairman of the West Merger Committee. As most of you know, Russ served on the America West Merger Committee under ALPA during the America West / US Airways merger, and was a key participant throughout the Nicolau arbitration process and subsequent litigation. Given Russ' experience with seniority integration matters and his time-tested working relationship with our legal team, we believe Russ is the most logical choice to serve in this role.

 

THE NICOLAU AWARD

 

Many of you rightfully are bit fuzzy as to the status of the Nicolau Award after the latest iteration of court battles and arbitrations, and have asked us to explain how the Nicolau Award might become part of the new American Airlines seniority list.

 

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America West Merger Committee Update December 19, 2014

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The Preliminary Arbitration hearings in Washington D.C concluded on December 17. The hearings spanned three full days, culminating in closing arguments by all parties in the afternoon. The Protocol Agreement asks that the arbitrators issue an award within 30 days of the close of the hearings, which would be Friday, January 16, 2015. 

As we stated in our previous communications, we have adopted the practice of the former AWA ALPA Merger Committee of not providing commentary during the pendency of hearings, and instead posting all hearing transcripts on the internet as soon as they become available. All three days of hearing transcripts are available on our website www.west-merger-committee-com. We did our best to provide an objective summary of the issues that were to be argued in the Preliminary Arbitration before the hearings began, and the transcripts themselves best describe how the parties tackled those issues in the hearing itself.