Since our March 30, 2015 update there have been numerous briefs filed in the United States District Court Western District of North Carolina regarding the Velez and LMRDA lawsuits. If you didn’t have the opportunity to read the prior update, please click here. The March 30th update has many of the previous Court Pleadings linked, and it will help to bring the latest round of briefs into sharper focus.
Several Pleadings were recently filed in the LMRDA case by Defendants Gary Hummel and 8 other defendants sued in their individual capacity. (The remaining defendants appear to have been evading service, but are no doubt aware of the suit, as Footnote 1 in our recent brief states. This delay tactic by the mostly BPR defendants should not delay this case from proceeding.) A Motion to Vacate (Doc 22-1) was filed on April 15 , 2015, and a Memorandum of Opposition to West Plaintiff’s Motion for Temporary Restraining Order (Doc 24) was filed on April 20, 2015. These filings by the leaders of USAPA attempt to reframe the original complaint filed by West Plaintiffs Bill Tracey, Simon Parrott, and Eddie Bollmeier by mischaracterizing the issues as one against the former bargaining agent (FBA) USAPA instead of the individual fiduciaries. As quoted in Plaintiffs’ combined Opposition and Reply pleading (Doc 35) filed on May 4, 2015,
Plaintiffs are masters of their own Complaint and, contrary to Defendants’ misleading assertions, mischaracterizations and implications, their Complaint seeks nothing of the sort. Rather, Plaintiffs seek only to enforce those rights afforded union members under Title V of the LMRDA, namely the right to hold union officers personally liable for breaching their fiduciary duty to the Union’s members by expending Union funds—derived exclusively from dues payments by union members—in contravention of the plain terms of a Union’s constitution and bylaws and under circumstances where their expenditure of those funds advances their personal interests, rather than holding those funds for the benefit of the Union for ultimate dispersal to all of the Union’s members as expressly provided for by USAPA’s Constitution.
Other portions of Defendants’ briefs are equally misleading and are mostly an attempt at tricking the court into thinking that the LMRDA suit is just another DFR action. Defendants’ Reply brief is due on May 14, 2015, and then the LMRDA case will be “at issue” with the Court, meaning the Judge will be able to begin responding to the Complaint and its many Motions.
Also, the Addington III Oral Argument was heard on April 14, 2015 in San Francisco, The Honorable 9th Circuit Judges A. Wallace Tashima, Susan P. Graber and Jay S. Bybee presiding. A video record of the proceeding can be viewed here (run time approximately 45 minutes). Pursuant to Circuit Rule 28-6 and F.R.A.P. 28(j), Plaintiffs submitted a letter (Doc 56-1) on April 17, 2015 “to notify the Court of additional authority that is relevant to issues presented in the appeal and cross-appeals.” The appeal record is now complete and there is no timeline as to when the Judges will rule on our appeal and USAPA’s cross-appeal. The nine Addington III Plaintiffs have outlined the appeal in Doc 13-1 here.
As always, all legal documents with their supporting exhibits can be found in the legal library at cactuspilot.com. The Web site is open to everyone, and no password is required.
Contributions to the ongoing legal efforts are essential in dealing with the remaining threats and issues as we move forward to their eventual conclusions.