Patterico's Pontifications

9/1/2015

Nadia Naffe Dismisses Lawsuit Against Me — Without Collecting a Penny

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:18 pm



Nadia Naffe and I have settled her lawsuit against me. I am paying her nothing. I am retracting nothing. There are no secret promises. The lawsuit has been dismissed, in exchange for my waiving any claims for attorneys’ fees or costs.

Throughout this lawsuit I have vigorously defended my First Amendment rights, and continue to do so. I stand by what I have said about Ms. Naffe, and I remain free to criticize her in the future. I continue to believe Ms. Naffe’s lawsuit was a vehicle designed to silence me. Ms. Naffe sued my wife. Ms. Naffe even sued Steve Cooley — who at the time was the Los Angeles County District Attorney, and my boss.

I continue to believe these were obvious attempts to misuse the court system, to punish me for my speech about a matter of public interest. Recall that the trial judge threatened to sanction Ms. Naffe and her lawyer Jay Leiderman for, as the judge put it, “Plaintiff’s (and/or her counsel’s) willingness to play fast-and-loose with the language that is actually at issue here.”

In the end, these tactics were unsuccessful.

It was interesting to be a defendant in a frivolous lawsuit. I went through the experience of watching media outlets publish stories about this case that repeated Ms. Naffe’s allegations as if they were true. It will be interesting to see whether any of them report that the lawsuit has been settled, with nothing retracted, and not one cent paid to Ms. Naffe. Frankly, I doubt it. Big Media loves to repeat wild allegations made in frivolous lawsuits — but the dismissal of those lawsuits is, all too often, not considered newsworthy.

While litigation is never pleasant, this litigation had some positive effects. For example, it set an important Ninth Circuit free speech precedent, holding that public employees are allowed to discuss matters of public concern on their own time. I am proud to have had a part in setting that precedent. The courts have ruled that I did not act under color of law. I did not blog or tweet about Ms. Naffe on taxpayer time.

The best part about the experience was the support I received. Not only did you, the readers, stand by me, but three lawyers stepped up and helped me throughout the process. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to attorneys Ronald D. Coleman (from Likelihood of Confusion) and Kenneth P. White (from Popehat), who both worked endless hours on this case for zero pay — and came up with the strategy that made this result possible. I would like to thank also Eugene Volokh of UCLA Law School and the Volokh Conspiracy blog at the Washington Post. Eugene wrote an amicus brief supporting my position in the Ninth Circuit, where I prevailed on the “color of law” claim.

These gentlemen all did outstanding work — not so much for me, but for the cause of free speech. I was just an incidental beneficiary . . . but a very pleased and grateful one.

Please join me in thanking Ken White, Ron Coleman, and Eugene Volokh for their efforts in bringing home this victory.

6/15/2015

Ninth Circuit Issues Nadia Naffe Opinion

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:18 pm



The opinion is here. The outcome is precisely what I expected after watching the video of the oral argument. It’s a win on one issue, and (for now) a temporary setback on another.

Here are the two obscure issues the panel was considering.

First: did Naffe sufficiently allege that I acted under “color of law” claim under section 1983 by criticizing her as a private citizen on Twitter and my blog? Answer: no. Naffe loses on that issue.

Here is the key passage from the opinion. I am going to remove most of the citations for ease of reading:

Naffe’s § 1983 claim fails under this framework for several reasons. First, Naffe’s factual allegations do not give rise to the reasonable inference that Frey harmed Naffe while on duty or when “exercising his responsibilities pursuant to state law.” Frey is a county prosecutor whose official responsibilities do not include publicly commenting about conservative politics and current events. While county prosecutors are sometimes authorized to speak on behalf of their employers, Naffe pleads no facts to support her allegation that the County authorized or encouraged Frey’s
social and political commentary. Indeed, Frey discussed Naffe not on the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s verified Twitter page, but rather on his personal Twitter page and blog, which contain disclaimers that “[a]ll statements are made in [Frey’s] private capacity and not on behalf of [his] employer.” Finally, each Tweet or post cited by Naffe in her complaint is time-stamped very late at night or early in the morning, a fact which undermines her claim that Frey blogged and Tweeted during normal business hours using County resources. [I will also note that the timestamps were not on Pacific time, and therefore seemed later at night than they actually were. — Ed.]

Second, Frey’s comments about Naffe are not sufficiently related to his work as a county prosecutor to constitute state action. Naffe alleges Frey threatened to prosecute her as a way of coercing her to delete O’Keefe’s emails from her smart phone and remain quiet about O’Keefe’s plan to wiretap Representative Waters’s district office. But Naffe does not state any facts to support the allegation that Frey investigated her (or even could have investigated her). Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. She does not, for example, allege Frey used his authority to contact law enforcement, open an investigation file, or interview witnesses about Naffe’s involvement with O’Keefe. And a single Tweet in which Frey rhetorically asked “what criminal statutes, if any [Naffe] admitted violating,” does not create a nexus between Frey’s private harangues and his job.

Third, the facts Naffe pleads do not support her claim that Frey “purported or pretended to act under color of [state] law” when he blogged about her. To the contrary, Frey frequently reminded his readers and followers that, although he worked for Los Angeles County, he blogged and Tweeted only in his personal capacity. By contrast, in Anderson, where we found state action, defendant Warner specifically associated his actions with his law enforcement position, claiming to bystanders he was “a cop,” and the assault was “police business.” Here, unlike in Anderson, Frey did not claim to act in his official capacity. For this reason, Frey did not abuse the power given to him by the state to influence or harm Naffe.

And although Frey drew on his experiences as a Deputy District Attorney to inform his blog posts and Tweets, that alone does not transform his private speech into public action. Indeed, if we were to consider every comment by a state employee to be state action, the constitutional rights of public officers to speak their minds as private citizens would be substantially chilled to the detriment of the “marketplace of ideas.” See City of San Diego, Cal. v. Roe, 543 U.S. 77, 82 (2004) (per curiam) (“[P]ublic employees are often the members of the community who are likely to have informed opinions as to the operations of their public employers, operations which are of substantial concern to the public. Were they not able to speak on these matters, the community would be deprived of informed opinions on important public issues.”) . . . .

Emphasis is mine.

Second issue: did the District Court err by using a “preponderance of the evidence” standard to determine that she had not proved her damages were more than $75,000? Answer: yes. The correct standard, said the court, was whether the trial court could say to a “legal certainty” that her damages (again, taking her claims as true) could exceed $75,000. That standard makes it very easy for a plaintiff to allege damage, and the Ninth Circuit said she had sufficiently done so.

I have to keep repeating this: the factual allegations in the opinion are stated as if Naffe’s allegations are all true. The appellate court is required to do this. It doesn’t mean her allegations actually are all true. They aren’t.

Ken White has more at Popehat. The key point from the micro-perspective of the lawsuit is this: all the motions we had in play at the time, including an anti-SLAPP motion, are still in play.

But the larger issue is the precedent this decision creates, and one that I am proud to have had a role in. Namely, there is now a published precedent (albeit one that accepts false facts about me as being true) holding that public employees may give opinions about matters of public interest without being hit with a section 1983 lawsuit. (Well, we can always be hit with one, but it won’t go anywhere.)

Thanks very much to Ronald D. Coleman (from Likelihood of Confusion) and Kenneth P. White (from Popehat), who have both worked endless hours on this case. Thanks also to Eugene Volokh, who wrote an amicus brief supporting my position. I can’t find the words to properly thank these gentlemen for all their help on this case (and the one brought by Brett Kimberlin). I hope you will help spread the word about what great men they are, and what a great thing it is that they have done here.

4/22/2013

How Was the Nadia Naffe Case Frivolous and Abusive? Let Me Count (Just a Few of) the Ways

Filed under: General,Nadia Naffe — Patterico @ 6:44 am



As I indicated on Friday evening, the frivolous and abusive lawsuit by Nadia Naffe against me has been dismissed. Ken from Popehat has the rundown on what happened procedurally, and has posted a collection of excellent legal documents that provide all the information necessary for anyone with an abiding interest in the case.

I thought I would highlight a few quotations from the publicly available filings in this matter that show how my lawyers demonstrated that her lawsuit lacked merit.

First, a brief recap: Naffe initially sued, not only me, but also Los Angeles County, my former boss Steve Cooley, and (incredibly) my wife. My lawyers filed a set of motions showing how utterly meritless Naffe’s claims were. In particular, they blasted Naffe for her irresponsible decision to name my wife as a defendant. In response, Naffe made no attempt whatsoever to justify having sued my wife. She simply dismissed my wife from the suit. There was never any basis whatsoever for naming my wife in this lawsuit, and I believe that Naffe’s decision to do so was simply a tactic designed to terrorize my family.

Bolstering my conclusion that this was a politically motivated attack were the admissions by Neal Rauhauser (the hatchet-man associate of Brett Kimberlin) that he had arranged counsel for Naffe. Rauhauser proudly trumpeted his silly but telling hope that the lawsuit would accomplish his (and Kimberlin’s) long-held goal of costing me my job.


Above: Neal Rauhauser and Nadia Naffe, 2012

(It did nothing to dispel my suspicions about the political nature of this lawsuit when a lawyer who was suing James O’Keefe took over the litigation — after the judge had issued a ruling that expressed extreme skepticism about whether Naffe could show damages in excess of $75,000. Usually, lawyers don’t get too excited about lawsuits that the judge has said are unlikely to be profitable.)

Basically, I had put up a publicly available court document from PACER, and soon learned that the lawyers who had uploaded it to PACER had not redacted it, as they were supposed to have done. So I took down the link to the document a little over an hour after the post was published. I redacted the document, and put it back up. And Nadia Naffe literally made a federal case out of it.

The meat of the Court’s ruling dismissing her claims is contained in the Court’s tentative ruling, which was confirmed by a short minute order on Friday. As Ken did, I want to emphasize two comments that the judge made in the tentative ruling concerning the manner in which Naffe and/or her attorneys “played fast-and-loose” with my language. Here is the first:

In paragraph 39 of the FAC [First Amended Complaint] Plaintiff quotes Frey as saying the following: “You owe [O’Keefe] @gamesokeefeiii a retraction. A big one. You’d better issue it promptly. [A threat made as a Deputy District Attorney].” FAC 39. The Court may consider the text of Frey’s actual statement in connection with a Rule 12(b)(6) challenge. See Marder v. Lopez, 450 F.3d 445, 448 (9th Cir. 2006), Lee v. City of Los Angeles, 250 F.3d 668, 688-89 (9th Cir. 2001.). Notwithstanding Plaintiff’s use of quotation marks, the language “[A threat made as a Deputy District Attorney]” does not appear in Frey’s actual comment. See Frey Decl. (Docket No. 40), Exh. KK, at 266. The Court would consider issuing sanctions against Plaintiff and/or her attorneys for the contents of paragraph 39. [emphasis added]

They inserted words inside quotation marks that I had never said. The second comment by the judge:

In her Opposition brief, Plaintiff characterizes this as “Frey issu[ing] a direct threat against Ms. Naffe with Frey stating that he intended to investigate Ms. Naffe for possible criminal misconduct.” Docket No. 53, at 11:18-21. Again, sanctions may very well be in play for Plaintiff’s (and/or her counsel’s) willingness to play fast-and-loose with the language that is actually at issue here. [Emphasis added]

One other observation I would like to emphasize from the judge’s tentative ruling concerns Naffe’s claim that she was having trouble finding employment because of what I said about her. I present the judge’s response without comment:

As for those interested in the facts of the case, the reader needs to understand that when the case was dismissed, the case was still in the stage where we were challenging the pleadings. That means that, to a large extent, the judge was forced to accept even untrue allegations as if they were true. For example, when Naffe falsely claimed that I blog and tweet on the taxpayer dime, my lawyers were forced to accept that as true for purposes of our motions, even though it is false. It is a very frustrating position for a person to be in — but such is the plight of a civil defendant.

There were, however, limited ways that we were permitted to dispute some of her allegations in certain contexts. Towards that end, I provided a declaration that is probably the best document for you to read if you are interested in the underlying history of the case. My declaration explains, among other things, how I began writing about Naffe, and how I obtained and posted the deposition transcripts.

My declaration also provides proof that contradicted several of Naffe’s assertions in her complaint and declarations. For example:

  • Naffe claimed that I had not obtained the deposition transcripts from PACER, but had somehow obtained them though resources available to me as a DDA. Not so. I provided proof, in the form of records from PACER, showing I had downloaded the transcripts from PACER on the same Saturday that I posted them.
  • Naffe claimed that I had issued certain posts “as a Deputy District Attorney.” Not so. I provided printouts of those actual posts in which I said in the body of the post that I was posting as a private citizen and not a DDA.
  • I provide proof in the declaration that the link to the publicly available deposition transcripts containing Naffe’s Social Security Number was removed from the post about an hour and 17 minutes after it was first put up. (Indeed, if Ron Brynaert had not publicly tweeted the fact that the transcript contained her Social Security number, it could have been taken down and redacted with nobody being the wiser. But for some reason Brynaert — who has also complained about me to my workplace, and has spoken of punching me in the nose and taking a “shit” on my wife — decided to make this information public rather than emailing me privately. Draw your own conclusions as to why.)
  • Naffe claimed that she had been intimidated by my March 2012 post linking to her deposition, and that she made her blog private as a result. Our 12(b)(1) reply provided proof that her blog was still public in May 2012, and that she was blogging that she had not been intimidated by my post.

Let me provide you specific quotes on that last point, because they are telling. Here is her sworn declaration from November 19, 2012:

In other words, as a result of the actions of MR. FREY, I was in fact intimidated into not giving evidence of O’Keefe’s wire tapping to the County. . . . As a direct result of MR. FREY’s harassment, and in order to prevent further harassment, I have been forced to make private both my Twitter account and my blog at nadianaffe.com. Though I desire to, MR. FREY has made it impossible to freely participate in online speech. [Emphasis added]

Naffe’s claim of harassment revolved around a post and other tweets that I published in late March 2012. That’s when she was supposedly intimidated into making her blog private and not reporting evidence of a crime. Yet we showed that her blog was still public in May 2012, when she published a post at nadianaffe.com that said:

Patrick Frey may have believed that posting my Social Security Number and medical records online to his blog, in retaliation, would intimidate and stop me from telling the truth about O’keefe [sic], chill my First Amendment right and dissuade me from coming forward to report a crime committed in his jurisdiction. Though, what he has accomplished is precisely the opposite. These two civil servants, both deputy district attorney’s [sic] in Los Angles [sic] County, in the past were able to bully and harass private individuals, with impunity. But their patent on intimidation and retribution expired when they came to me. The Frey’s [sic] are the poster children for the type of rampant corruption Carmen Trutanich, Alan Jackson and Danette Myers [sic] have each spoken out against. (Exhibit LL at 268-269.) [Emphasis added]

If you read only one document from this latest round of filings, I would read my declaration, mentioned above. If you read a second document, I would read this one: the reply brief on the anti-SLAPP motion. This is one of my favorite documents in the whole lawsuit. It describes Naffe’s suit as “a classic SLAPP – a lawsuit calculated to retaliate against expression that makes the plaintiff angry.” Page 2 lists various statements of hers that we had demonstrated to be deceptive and/or misleading. Pages 11-12 set forth the specific context for my remark that Naffe was “full of false allegations.” It also opposed her seeking discovery by making these points:

Plaintiff has boasted that she will use the discovery process in this case to harass Mr. Frey on unrelated issues including (1) how Mr. Frey and his wife afforded their house; (2) an unrelated incident in which Mr. Frey was the victim of a false police report; and (3) the identity of an unrelated anonymous blogger.

It’s impossible to list all the deceptive and/or misleading aspects of Naffe’s lawsuit in a single blog post. Hopefully, this gives you a sense of why we considered it to be a meritless attack on free speech — and why the judge dismissed the case and threatened Naffe and/or her lawyers with sanctions.

Once again, I want to reiterate my praise for my skilled and principled attorneys: Kenneth P. White (Ken from Popehat), and Ron Coleman (from Likelihood of Confusion). Without people like Ken and Ron standing up for free speech, this country would be a poorer place.

4/19/2013

BREAKING: Nadia Naffe Lawsuit Dismissed

Filed under: General,Nadia Naffe — Patterico @ 5:49 pm



Some (more) bright news at the end of a depressing week:

Details to follow at Popehat.

For now, I will say only that I have the greatest lawyers in the world: Kenneth P. White (Ken from Popehat), and Ron Coleman (from Likelihood of Confusion).

Comments are open.

UPDATE: Ken’s post is up here. I plan to blog this result in more detail on Monday morning. There are several reasons for this proposed delay. Hopefully, the entire country will not be as focused on tonight’s arrest of the Boston Marathon bomber. Hopefully, the steady drumbeat of depressing news of violence will have dwindled to a trickle. Finally, traffic should be back to normal weekday levels. I hope to publish my detailed post on this at a moment when the glorious tradition of people reading blogs at work is being observed with all the energy America’s workforce has to offer.

But for now, I would like to focus your attention on three brief points.

First: Ken quotes two footnotes from the judge’s tentative ruling, which was confirmed (and expanded upon) today. The judge twice threatened Nadia Naffe and/or her attorney with sanctions “for Plaintiff’s (and/or her counsel’s) willingness to play fast-and-loose with the language that is actually at issue here.” That’s a quote from the judge, folks. I didn’t make it up. As Ken points out, while the judge did not ultimately follow through on the threat, the language is nevertheless telling. To quote Ken:

Though Judge Wu did not ultimately award sanctions, I look forward to quoting those words on appeal or in a state court motion for sanctions if Naffe re-files there.

Second: Ken and I in particular got to face, not just criticism, but “vapid and dishonest partisan hacks” who criticized both of us for standing up for free speech — including “the greasy, demi-literate, demented Hutt who wrote an extended quasi-sexual fantasy about a mob murdering Patrick and me.”

Hi, Bill Schmalfeldt! I understand you were curious about the result of this case. I’m happy to be sharing that with you! And, your sick, twisted fantasies notwithstanding, nobody has yet beaten me or Ken with baseball bats or tire irons. No group of men has thrown us in front of a moving truck as part of a conspiracy to cause our deaths. (If you think I am exaggerating, I have uploaded a .pdf of Schmalfeldt’s violent fantasy here.)

Third: Ken’s post, and the conduct of Ken White and Ron Coleman throughout this litigation, is an inspiration to people everywhere who stand up for free speech. Ken makes the point well when he says this:

I defended [Patterico] because the First Amendment that lets him speak freely lets me speak as well. I defended him because malicious, frivolous, and politically motivated lawsuits aimed at censorship make it a little more dangerous for each of us to speak. I defended him pro bono because frivolous lawsuits can effectively censor people even when they eventually fail, because the expenses of lawsuits can be ruinous.

When I told Ken this evening by email that I could not thank him enough, he told me: “[T]o pay me back, keep writing what you want to write, and encourage people to support free speech, especially for people with whom they disagree.” That brings tears to my eyes. It makes me want to stand up and start singing “God Bless America.” And, on a more practical level, it redoubles my resolve to continue donating to organizations like FIRE — and to continue to stand up for free speech rights on this blog, even when I disagree with the opinions being expressed.

That’s more than I expected to say in this post — and yet, I plan to blog this result with a little more specificity on Monday. For those of you who have specific questions about the litigation, I hope to be able to point you to court documents that address some of the issues, and make it clear why this litigation has been such an abusive attack on legitimate criticism of a public figure.

In the meantime, go read Ken’s post in its entirety, and please give him and Ron Coleman your thanks for the service they have done, not just for me, but for the cause of free speech in America.

UPDATE x2: Thanks very much to Instapundit for the link. Once any new readers have finished bookmarking this site, I hope they visit the blogs of my pro bono lawyers: Popehat and Likelihood of Confusion.

UPDATE x3: And don’t forget to become a fan of Patterico on Facebook and to follow me on Twitter!

12/11/2012

Update on Nadia Naffe Lawsuit

Filed under: General,Nadia Naffe — Patterico @ 6:41 am



As you may know, my lawyers in the Nadia Naffe litigation are Kenneth P. White of Popehat, and Ron Coleman from Likelihood of Confusion. Ken from Popehat reports on encouraging progress in the litigation:

Today I write to offer pleadings for anyone interested in the case, and a pleasing update regarding its status. As long as litigation continues, I’ll refrain for both prudential and stylistic reasons from arguing our case here, other than to say we continue to believe the case is an abusive and meritless attempt to retaliate against protected speech.

. . . .

In brief, Judge Wu agreed with us that the Complaint failed to state a claim under 42 U.S.C. section 1983 because the facts alleged do not show that Mr. Frey was acting “under color of state law,” as is required under that statute. After argument, he gave Ms. Naffe what he described as “just one chance” to amend — that is, he gave her a chance to file an amended complaint to see if she could plead facts sufficient to satisfy the requirements of Section 1983. Generally judges err in favor of giving a chance to amend.

Ken notes that, in response to our motions, Naffe dismissed all claims against my wife. He also cautions that the judge’s order

treats allegations of fact in the Complaint as true for purposes of the motion to dismiss, as is appropriate; that’s not a finding that the allegations are true. Many are not.

There are more details and links to all the pleadings at the link. If you read just one pleading, it should probably be this one (.pdf). On Ken’s and Ron’s advice, comments are closed, but I will note that I am very grateful to Ken White and Ron Coleman for their pro bono work on this case.

10/4/2012

Nadia Naffe Sues Patterico, Mrs. Patterico, and Our Boss

Filed under: Brett Kimberlin,General,Nadia Naffe,Neal Rauhauser — Patterico @ 7:42 am



I have learned that my wife and I are being sued by Nadia Naffe, who leveled accusations at James O’Keefe last year, and was the subject of criticism at this blog earlier this year. Also named in the lawsuit are Los Angeles County, and Steve Cooley, the District Attorney of Los Angeles County. The complaint has been filed in the U.S. District Court in the Central District of California, Case No. 2:12-cv-08443-GW-MRW, and is captioned Nadia Naffe v. John Patrick Frey, et al.

Brett Kimberlin associates have played a role in instigating this lawsuit. Kimberlin’s associate Neal Rauhauser recently admitted in a complaint to my office that he introduced Naffe to attorney Jay Leiderman:

I brought this situation to the attention of Los Angeles attorney Jay Leiderman, then introduced he and Naffe, and he is now representing her in a civil case against Frey.

In the same document, Rauhauser declared that if Naffe is successful, he believes it will put an end to my career as a Deputy D.A.:

[T]he lawsuit he faces from Nadia Naffe is another matter and it is understood that if she prevails that may put an end to Frey’s career in the DA’s office.


Above: Neal Rauhauser and Nadia Naffe, 2012

As regular readers are well aware, Rauhauser has long wanted me sued, fired, and so forth for several reasons — one of which is the fact that I have defended James O’Keefe on this blog. Here is a quote from Rauhauser from July 2011:

This new situation is a little different. Patterico I want to see fired from his Deputy District Attorney job, barred from practicing any sort of law, sued to the point of bankruptcy, or criminally charged. Better yet, all five of these would not be sufficient for this tiresome little punk. The motivation, briefly, is that he used to spend his time vigorously defending that little creep James O’Keefe, and his behavior of late seems to indicate he had a hand in the stalking and smearing of Congressman Weiner.

I have not seen the complaint, but a tort claims action Naffe filed earlier this year primarily related to my publication of public documents from the federal PACER system in this post. (The PACER system is open to the public. This, by the way, is the same PACER system that Leiderman encourages his Twitter followers to consult, for details on the lawsuit.)

Naffe’s previous claim also attaches Brett Kimberlin’s State Bar complaint against me. That is one of several details showing a connection between Kimberlin (and his supporters) and Naffe. To cite just a few examples:

  • Rauhauser and Naffe discussed the issuance of a subpoena for James O’Keefe’s emails.
  • Kimberlin issued a subpoena for those emails, in a lawsuit (Kimberlin vs. Allen) where there had already been a final judgment.
  • Rauhauser has claimed that he then rode the train with Naffe to collect the emails.
  • Brett Kimberlin supporter Breitbart Unmasked claimed that “we” have Naffe “covered” after another Kimberlin supporter complained about my blogging about Naffe:

  • Breitbart Unmasked also told Naffe to complain about me to my office, reasoning that such complaints cause me to have less power as a blogger:

I am fortunate to have pro bono representation from two fine lawyers: Kenneth P. White (whom you may know from Popehat), and Ron Coleman (whom you may know from Likelihood of Confusion). I will be responsible for expenses, so any help would certainly be appreciated. The tip jar is on the sidebar.

I don’t know to what extent (if any) I will be blogging on this case as it develops. However, I am confident that the court will see that my speech about Naffe was protected under the First Amendment.

On the advice of Ken and Ron, I will not be allowing comments on this post.

6/12/2012

More Evidence Emerges of Brett Kimberlin’s Involvement in Nadia Naffe Litigation Against Me

Nadia Naffe has filed a civil claim against me and my boss Steve Cooley. This claim gains special relevance today — because of the identity of Nadia Naffe’s lawyer, together with an email that just emerged this evening.

Yesterday evening, Brooks Bayne broke news of a May 24 email from Brett Kimberlin associate Neal Rauhauser to a lawyer named Jay Leiderman. Here’s the email:

If this email is genuine, it cements the evidence of: 1) a friendly relationship between Kimberlin associate Neal Rauhauser and attorney Jay Leiderman, and 2) efforts by Rauhauser to turn a person thought to be an enemy of mine against me, by referring that person to Leiderman.

As Stacy McCain says:

I’m not a lawyer, but what Rauhauser appears to be doing in this May 28 e-mail — besides lying about me — is attempting to inveigle California attorney Jay Leiderman into representing Mike Stack in a nuisance lawsuit against Patrick “Patterico” Frey.

There is a reason I find this particularly interesting.

Namely: in an amazing coincidence, Jay Leiderman happens to be Nadia Naffe’s attorney. In her post about how she desires to sue me and my wife, she posted a link to a document showing service of a civil claim against me and my boss Steve Cooley. That document indicates that her lawyer is Leiderman:

There are many more connections between Naffe and Kimberlin / Kimberlin associates. Perhaps in a future post I’ll have time to lay them all out.

But for now, this one is pretty interesting, eh?

P.S. Here is one more I have time for.

On May 26, 2012, Nadia Naffe also threatened to file a State Bar complaint against me. If she follows through with her threat, she will join Brett Kimberlin in sharing the honor of filing a State Bar Complaint against Patrick Frey:

Naffe also threatened to file a State Bar complaint against my wife, a Democrat who cancels out my vote in every election. She joined Ron Brynaert, Kimberlin associate Neal Rauhauser, and anonymous Brett Kimberlin supporters OccupyRebellion, BreitbartUnmask, LulzShack, and Gaped Crusader (and probably others I am forgetting) in making creepy comments about my wife:

3/24/2012

Documents from Nadia Naffe’s Race Discrimination Case Against the RNC: The Computer That Was Never Returned

Filed under: General,Nadia Naffe — Patterico @ 5:11 pm



Poking around PACER, one finds the most interesting things. Things that journalists like Tommy Christopher might want to look into, if they found themselves writing about Nadia Naffe. The following is from an order made by the court overseeing that lawsuit, after taking testimony from Naffe regarding a laptop that she had been lent by the Florida Republican Party during her employment. The court found that she had been asked to return it, and intentionally did not:

The relevance of the laptop is described in her deposition, which I found on PACER as well, in three parts: one, two, and three. Interesting reading. Apparently she believed she had been given an inferior laptop, presumably because she was black, given the lawsuit’s allegations.

But I guess it was good enough to keep after she was terminated, even though she had been instructed to return it.

By the way, I should note that Naffe has threatened to report me to my State Bar and my place of employment for writing posts critical of her:

The theory is that, by pointing out holes in her story, on a public blog, concerning a matter of public interest, I am giving James O’Keefe “legal advice” in a civil suit.

The claim is absurd. If a non-lawyer criticizes O’Keefe, in a way that gives her a legal argument in court, is that practicing law without a license? No self-respecting employer or bar investigator would buy this logic, so she moved on to another false claim: that I updated my blog on company time. You can add that to a large set of other falsehoods she has told in recent days and weeks.

The motive is to silence me. The likely result is that her tactics will draw greater attention to my criticism of her claims, and her tactics of trying to silence her critics.

UPDATE: Interesting points in comments about the medications she was taking, and how those medications don’t mix well with alcohol. One of the medications, Seroquil, is commonly prescribed for schizophrenia, mania, or bipolar disorder — all afflictions that may well not be temporary. If she was still taking the medications in late 2011, it could explain why she allegedly had such a strong reaction to alcohol. Details here.

There is another point about Seroquil that, together with the above information, might make for an interesting post. Will have to think about this one . . .

3/23/2012

Tommy Christopher Fails to Vet Nadia Naffe, 1: Crowdsourcing

Filed under: General,Nadia Naffe — Patterico @ 7:31 am



I had hoped to do a monstrous post today noting all the very odd aspects about Nadia Naffe’s story that Tommy Christopher ignored in his credulous reporting yesterday. But there are just too many, and I was tired last night and didn’t have time to compile them all.

So I will probably do that post over the weekend or on Monday. In the meantime, I am looking for some crowdsourcing. What odd aspects did you notice?

My post yesterday is a good place to start; I don’t need to hear those things repeated.

In a stream of consciousness here, these are the questions Tommy should be asking but is not:

  • Why did you tell a judge this was all not harassment?
  • Why do you claim the barn is remote when it is provably in a populated suburban area close to the street?
  • Why didn’t you call a cab, since you had a phone and were calling people?
  • Why do you say O’Keefe’s companion was brought to intimidate you and also say he was hiding?
  • What does it mean when you say O’Keefe “downloaded and/or linked his Gmail account to my device”?
  • Does that morally justify your publishing his emails?
  • Where are the Andrew Breitbart allegations?
  • Where is the evidence of a “rape plot”?
  • Why did you retweet Andrew Breitbart favorably in late 2011 concerning Occupy after the barn incident?
  • What changed in mid-February 2011 that made you turn on Andrew?
  • If you turned your back, how do you know O’Keefe stopped by your beer?
  • Why are you hurting innocent women who were allegedly done wrong by O’Keefe?
  • If you were given roofies, how do you remember so much?
  • How much did you in fact have to drink?
  • What do you think this is doing to your job prospects and what does that say about what’s really going on here?
  • Why are you cozy with Internet thugs?
  • Why do you say you retweet things so the FBI can get people’s IP addresses?
  • Do you realize how stupid that sounds?
  • Why do some of your friends claim it’s not you running the account?
  • Why do you tweet things to noted Breitbart hater @NicoleGennette?
  • Why did you make a snarky remark about Andrew’s heart attack on the day he died?
  • Why did you smear Patterico as a racist on Twitter when you knew it wasn’t true?
  • Did you publish your entire email to O’Keefe’s board of directors?
  • If you didn’t, why not, and what did you leave out?
  • Why do you say O’Keefe “stole” pictures of you from Facebook but “gave” you his emails because he supposedly checked them from your phone?

Just to name a few.

Surely you have some of your own!

UPDATE: A court has granted a temporary restraining order against Naffe’s releasing any further emails and ordered her to bring all copies in her possession with her to court.

UPDATE x2: I have the injunction and will post it when I get home. I can’t upload it from a phone.

UPDATE x3: The injunction is available here. Here is a screenshot of the relevant portion of the order:

You may have noticed that Naffe is now threatening to report me to the State Bar for this post, which is, she claims, “legal advice.” Because I point out holes in her story, she says, that constitutes “legal advice” to James O’Keefe in a civil matter. She also falsely accuses me of updating the post during work hours.

I have seen this playbook before, folks.

By the way: given Naffe’s admission that she accessed O’Keefe’s emails, evidently without his permission, has she committed a crime? I offer no opinion on that, as this post (like all my posts!) is written in my private capacity, as an exercise of my rights as a private citizen under the First Amendment. I do wonder, however, whether the authorities are going to be investigating her for accessing O’Keefe’s email without his permission.

3/22/2012

Questions About Nadia Naffe’s Story

Filed under: General,Nadia Naffe — Patterico @ 7:25 am



The big Nadia Naffe barn incident story is online. I don’t particularly feel like linking or quoting it; I’m sure you can find it if you want to. I don’t have a lot of time to discuss it, so I’ll just throw out a few quick questions to Nadia that I predict she and the partisan hacks writing about this story (hi Tommy Christopher!) will ignore:

  • Where is the evidence of a “rape plot”?
  • Where is the evidence that Andrew Breitbart ignored a “rape plot”?
  • If there was a “rape plot” then why did you testify that what happened that night was not harassment?
  • Why not call a cab? Why call Andrew Breitbart (who was all the way across the country) instead?
  • “James had downloaded and/or linked his Gmail account to my device.” What does “and/or” mean? Don’t you know which happened?
  • If someone accesses their Gmail from your phone or computer, and you are later able to re-enter their account, does that morally entitle you to access their account and download years’ worth of emails, as you insinuate you have done — or to publish all their emails online, as you have threatened to do?
  • Just how “remote” was this barn?
  • Why didn’t you mention your threat to destroy O’Keefe’s computers?
  • Is there anything missing from your republication of that email you sent to O’Keefe and his board of directors? If so, what does it say?
  • Why all the coziness with Anons and Internet thugs on Twitter?

The “and/or” thing is quite striking.

Countdown to Tommy Christopher uncritically repeating all this as if it’s a damning story with no holes in 5…4…3..

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