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Federal judge dismisses whistleblower suit against Rolls-Royce

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A federal judge in Indianapolis has dismissed a whistleblower lawsuit filed by a former Rolls-Royce Corp. engineer who accused the company of selling faulty aircraft engine parts to the government.

Judge Sarah Evans Barker on Monday sided with London-based Rolls-Royce, which employs about 4,500 people in Indianapolis, on its motion to dismiss the case.

Curtis Lusby, who worked as a senior project engineer at the Indianapolis Rolls-Royce aircraft engine plant until 2001, accused the company of violating the False Claims Act by selling parts to the government that it knew did not regularly meet contractual specifications and requirements.

The parts were used in the T56 turboprop engine developed in the 1950s, one of the longest-serving engines in the military’s fleet.

Barker said in her ruling that Lusby failed to prove the accusations because he provided no evidence that Rolls-Royce ever sold a defective part to the government.

“At this late stage in this litigation, mere assumptions and speculation are insufficient to carry the day,” Barker wrote. “In the oft-used phrase, summary judgment is the ‘put up or shut up’ moment in a lawsuit.”

Lusby instead argued that Rolls-Royce should bear the burden of proof that it had not violated the law because it was responsible for the flaws.

But Barker said Lusby was unable to provide previous cases to support his argument.

In a prepared statement, Rolls-Royce said it is pleased with the ruling, which confirms that Lusby’s claims had no merit.

The case had been winding its way through the federal court system for years. Lusby first sued Rolls-Royce in May 2003. After two of his lawyers withdrew from the case at different times, he filed amended complaints in 2006 and 2007.

U.S. District Court in Indianapolis dismissed his complaint. But the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in June 2009 reversed part of the judgment, returning it to the federal court in Indianapolis.

Rolls-Royce still faces a similar lawsuit in the same court filed by a former safety official charging that the company concealed repeated defects at the aircraft engine plant.

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  1. Good riddance to this dangerous activist judge

  2. What is the one thing the Hoosier legal status quo hates more than a whistleblower? A lawyer whistleblower taking on the system man to man. That must never be rewarded, must always, always, always be punished, lest the whole rotten tree be felled.

  3. I want to post this to keep this tread alive and hope more of David's former clients might come forward. In my case, this coward of a man represented me from June 2014 for a couple of months before I fired him. I knew something was wrong when he blatantly lied about what he had advised me in my contentious and unfortunate divorce trial. His impact on the proceedings cast a very long shadow and continues to impact me after a lengthy 19 month divorce. I would join a class action suit.

  4. The dispute in LB Indiana regarding lake front property rights is typical of most beach communities along our Great Lakes. Simply put, communication to non owners when visiting the lakefront would be beneficial. The Great Lakes are designated navigational waters (including shorelines). The high-water mark signifies the area one is able to navigate. This means you can walk, run, skip, etc. along the shores. You can't however loiter, camp, sunbath in front of someones property. Informational signs may be helpful to owners and visitors. Our Great Lakes are a treasure that should be enjoyed by all. PS We should all be concerned that the Long Beach, Indiana community is on septic systems.

  5. Dear Fan, let me help you correct the title to your post. "ACLU is [Left] most of the time" will render it accurate. Just google it if you doubt that I am, err, "right" about this: "By the mid-1930s, Roger Nash Baldwin had carved out a well-established reputation as America’s foremost civil libertarian. He was, at the same time, one of the nation’s leading figures in left-of-center circles. Founder and long time director of the American Civil Liberties Union, Baldwin was a firm Popular Fronter who believed that forces on the left side of the political spectrum should unite to ward off the threat posed by right-wing aggressors and to advance progressive causes. Baldwin’s expansive civil liberties perspective, coupled with his determined belief in the need for sweeping socioeconomic change, sometimes resulted in contradictory and controversial pronouncements. That made him something of a lightning rod for those who painted the ACLU with a red brush." http://www.harvardsquarelibrary.org/biographies/roger-baldwin-2/ "[George Soros underwrites the ACLU' which It supports open borders, has rushed to the defense of suspected terrorists and their abettors, and appointed former New Left terrorist Bernardine Dohrn to its Advisory Board." http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/viewSubCategory.asp?id=1237 "The creation of non-profit law firms ushered in an era of progressive public interest firms modeled after already established like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People ("NAACP") and the American Civil Liberties Union ("ACLU") to advance progressive causes from the environmental protection to consumer advocacy." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cause_lawyering

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