First glance at court filings in the FTC enforcement case

One cool thing I have learned while blogging is that lots of records for federal court proceedings are available in the federal Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system. After following the case of Scott London for a while, I’ve learned my way around PACER.

I have taken a quick look at the documents available in PACER for the enforcement action by the FTC and all state AGs against four cancer charities.

There have been eight entries filed. One is the initial complaint and another assigned the case to a specific judge. The remaining six items are stipulations. I’m slowly catching on to this stuff. (Yeah, yeah, I’m often slow on the uptake. Yeah, it took me a really long time to figure out that PACER even exists.)

After looking at the first two stipulations, I’ve realized all 6 documents are proposed actions presented to the judge for approval. The first two items are signed by the charity’s attorney and chair of the board of directors. Obviously, that tells us the named individuals and organizations have agreed to the proposed orders that have been filed.

The other filings, all stipulations, are summarized by me based on the technical description:

  • injunction against Breast Cancer Society – this includes an agreement to liquidate and close the charity
  • appoint receiver for BCS
  • injunction against Children’s Cancer Fund of America and Rose Perkins
  • appoint receiver for CCFA
  • injunction against James Reynolds II
  • injunction against Kyle Effler

I have browsed the first two stipulations. They contain a large volume of legal discussion which doesn’t register with me. Several items I did understand.

First, there are specific citations for violations of federal law. There is a list of code sections showing how the actions by the charity have violated the laws of each state.

Second, the stipulation is signed by the organization’s counsel and the organization’s chair of the Board of Directors.

Third, the organization agrees to a fine of $65,564,363.

Fourth, the organization agrees to be dissolved. I think we can call that capital punishment.

Fifth, the stipulations were signed on April 14, 2015. The AGs each signed at various dates since then.

Six, there is an exquisitely complicated legal dance involved in these kind of documents. For example, the charity neither denies nor admits anything other than this specific court has jurisdiction over the case. Yet the board chair officially agrees to capital punishment and a $64,000,000 fine.

As I have time, I will read through all the documents.

There are no hearings scheduled, according to the PACER system, as of the morning of May 20.

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