MEDIA

Publications

Partners Harvey Stone and Richard Dolan write the monthly Eastern District Roundup column in the New York Law Journal. The column summarizes notable decisions issued by the judges of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. The firm’s lawyers publish elsewhere in the New York Law Journal and for the Federal Bar Council.
September 11, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 254

Section 1983 Suit Proceeds; Jury Verdict in Employment Case Stands

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Jack B. Weinstein explained the reasons for sentencing a defendant to time served (one month) for not registering as a sex offender, 18 U.S.C. §2250. Magistrate Judge Gary R. Brown declined to enjoin advertisements by either plaintiff Cablevision or defendant Verizon, where the two competing providers of Wi-Fi services had each sought to stop allegedly false claims by the other.

August 14, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 254

Former Inmates Allowed to Pursue Negligent Supervision Claims

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge William F. Kuntz II concluded, after an evidentiary hearing, that defendant was competent to stand trial and that, despite some dementia, he had exaggerated his symptoms for purposes of malingering. Judge Raymond J. Dearie dealt with issues of sovereign immunity under the Federal Tort Claims Act, as applied to various claims by two female inmates who had been sexually abused by a correctional counselor.

July 10, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 254

Hearing Ordered to Address Constitutionality of Prison Term

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. In a case involving a 15-year minimum sentence for possessing child pornography and sexually exploiting a child, Judge Jack B. Weinstein outlined the powerful mitigating circumstances of defendant's background, adjourned sentencing, directed the parties to brief issues related to cruel and unusual punishment and possible sentencing alternatives, and ordered an evidentiary hearing.

June 12, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 253

Judge Cites ‘Undue Hardship’ in Ordering Conviction Expunged

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge John Gleeson, pointing to extraordinary circumstances, granted petitioner's motion to expunge her conviction. Judge Brian M. Cogan imposed sanctions on plaintiff's counsel for bad-faith comments at a conference, and denied plaintiff's motion for recusal based on the court's alleged "financial interests" and "bias." And Magistrate Judge Anne Y. Shields granted plaintiff leave to amend his complaint by adding a new §1983 claim alleging misconduct by state officials in his murder prosecution.

May 8, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 253

Choice of Forum Provision in Internet Contract Not Enforced

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Frederic Block denied a father's Hague Convention petition for the return of his children to Poland. With minor exception, Judge Brian M. Cogan denied motions by defendant Arab Bank, LLC, in the wake of a jury verdict finding it liable for numerous acts of terrorism. And Judge Jack B. Weinstein declined to enforce choice-of-forum provisions found in defendant company's online agreements.

April 23, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 253

Judge Takes Significant Deviation From Sentencing Guidelines

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Jack B. Weinstein, referring to "excessive" sentences in drug cases, explained the strong reasons for leniency in sentencing a mother whose young daughter suffered from sickle cell disease and other impairments. Judge Raymond J. Dearie, on motions for summary judgment, addressed several issues relating to an insurance company's assertion of an "auto exclusion" defense. And Judge Denis R. Hurley found that various communications sent by defendant did not violate his supervised release because the evidence at hand did not show the statements to be "true threats."

March 13, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 253

Motion to Vacate Default Judgment Over Service of Process Denied

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Joanna Seybert relied on the good faith exception to the exclusionary rule in denying a motion to suppress where the search warrant lacked particularity. Judge Jack B. Weinstein, denying defendant's motion for summary judgment in a Title VII case brought by a pro se plaintiff, discussed the need for legal assistance in such cases and the current efforts to fill that need. Judge I. Leo Glasser declined to vacate a default judgment against defendants, whose claims of defective service of process were unpersuasive. And Judge Joseph F. Bianco affirmed Magistrate Judge Gary R. Brown's finding of discovery misconduct by an insurer/defendant and its counsel in a Hurricane Sandy case.

February 13, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 253

Motion to Withdraw Plea in Drug Case Using Informant Denied

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Arthur D. Spatt denied a motion to withdraw a guilty plea where counsel's failure to file a government misconduct motion attacking several counts in the indictment would have been a reasonable tactic and, in any event, caused no discernible prejudice. In a suit seeking an injunction directing Governor Andrew Cuomo to call a special election to fill a vacant congressional seat, Judge Jack B. Weinstein issued an opinion that prompted the governor to expedite the election, thus mooting the case.

January 9, 2015
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 253

Anonymous Jury, Inmate Actions, Pregnancy Discrimination Claims

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Sandra L. Townes granted the government's request to keep a trial jury anonymous and partially sequestered. Judge Edward R. Korman denied a motion by the City of New York for judgment on the pleadings in a suit alleging tort claims brought by a mentally impaired prison inmate who, in another case, had signed a settlement releasing the city from civil rights claims.

December 12, 2014
Published in: New York Law Journal | volume 252

Relief in Hurricane Sandy Cases Over Insurer’s Actions

This column reports on several significant, representative decisions handed down recently in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge John Gleeson, granting a §2255 motion, vacated petitioner's guilty plea in light of the government's misleading pre-plea disclosures, which omitted any mention of "warrantless wiretaps" under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act amendments of 2008. Magistrate Judge Gary R. Brown invited plaintiffs, whose house was damaged by Hurricane Sandy, to apply for sanctions as compensation for defendant insurer's deceptive engineering report, and ordered further discovery relating to such conduct in all Sandy-related cases.