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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. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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