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Second Century suit can proceed

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Indiana Lawyer Rehearing

A Marion Superior judge has lifted a stay on the litigation involving East Chicago’s accounting and use of casino revenue, allowing the state to proceed with discovery and ask the court to require a for-profit organization to turn over documents relating to millions in casino revenue.

On Oct. 25, Marion Superior Judge David Shaheed granted the Indiana Attorney General’s motion to lift a stay that had been put in place earlier in the year on the years’ old litigation, originally filed by AG Steve Carter against East Chicago Second Century. The suit is aimed at getting the organization to fully account for $16 million in revenue it had received during the course of a decade from its .75 percent cut of the revenue from the city’s riverboat casino. Second Century opposes the disclosure, but the Indiana Supreme Court last year ruled the lawsuit could go forward. The AG’s Office in July blocked the city’s attempts to settle the litigation and split the approximately $8 million in revenue that remains in a separate account, without an accounting of the money. Judge Shaheed has not yet ruled on a request to release the segregated funds to pay Second Century’s attorneys fees.

Zoeller intends to subpoena documents and records from Second Century, and he also intends to support legislation in 2011 that requires financial transparency of all entities receiving casino money from local development agreements that led to this situation. Similar legislation has failed in the past two legislative sessions.

While not directly connected to this case, Zoeller maintains this funding relates to larger corruption patterns in East Chicago that has been ongoing for years – evident from a $108 million default judgment against former mayor Robert Pastrick because of a paving-for-votes scheme, and a federal jury verdict on theft and conspiracy in September against Mayor George Pabey, who’s now been removed from office following the verdict that he used city money to pay for personal home improvements.

Rehearing "Court revives casino revenue lawsuit" IL Aug. 4-17, 2010

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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  4. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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