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April 2016 Archives

Prosecutors Claim Owen Labrie's Attorney Has Conflict Of Interest

Defense attorney has conflict of interest, should not represent convicted rapist in appeal, prosecutors say.

Merrimack County, NH prosecutors claim an attorney representing convicted rapist Owen Labrie in his appeal claiming ineffective counsel should not be able to represent him in the motion due to a

Invokana Lawsuit Claims Damages From Side Effects

Kentucky man files Invokana lawsuit claiming damages due to diabetic ketoacidosis side effects.

A lawsuit has been filed against Invokana's manufacturers Johnson & Johnson, its Janssen subsidiary, and Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corp in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey. In the suit, plaintiff Ricky Bowling of Kentucky claims he suffered damages from side effects he experienced when using the new generation diabetes medication. Bowling alleges that he suffered serious complications from a build up of acid ketones in the blood, known as diabetic ketoacidosis. According to Bowling's Invokana lawsuit, the medicine's manufacturers failed to research Invokana's side effects or warn patients and doctors about the increased risk of diabetic ketoacidosis. What is Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA)? DKA develops when your body can't produce enough insulin. Insulin has a key role in helping sugar or glucose, a major source of energy for muscles and other tissues enter cells. Without enough insulin, the body begins to break down fat as fuel. This process leads to a buildup of acids in the bloodstream called ketones, eventually leading to diabetic ketoacidosis if untreated. Usually when a patient develops diabetic ketoacidosis complications, they have to be hospitalized for treatments involving intravenous fluids and insulin. In severe cases, DKA can be life threatening and cause wrongful death. Invokana Ketoacidosis Side Effects Johnson & Johnson's Invokana was cleared for sale by the FDA in 2013. The FDA has issued several warning label changes and many injured plaintiffs are filing personal injury and product liability claims for Invokana ketoacidosis side effects. What is Invokana? Invokana (canagliflozin) is the first in a new class of diabetes drugs, known as sodium-glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. Invokana Ketoacidosis Risks The FDA has received many Invokana related adverse event reports. In May 2015, the FDA investigated the link between Invokana and ketoacidosis after discovering many reports of ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis complications are not unique to Invokana, other SGLT2 inhibitors including Invokamet, Farxiga, Xigduo XR, Jardiance and Glyxambi are also plagued with similar side effects.   Originally posted by Shezad Malik MD JD on the online version of The Legal Examiner. Invokana Lawsuit - Ball & Bonholtzer Trial Attorney - Los Angeles

Animal Studies Link Fetal Zofran Exposure To Birth Defects

Results of Japanese animal studies show link between fetal Zofran exposure and increased risk of birth defects.

Results of recent Japanese animal studies on the effects of fetal exposure to Zofran support claims by hundreds of U.S. plaintiffs in Zofran birth defect lawsuits: that exposure to the anti-nausea drug caused birth defects in their children. Just months after over 200 parents have stepped forward filing Zofran birth defect related lawsuits, the complaints have been transferred and consolidated to a single federal court in Boston. On December 11, 2015, Zofran manufacturer and defendant GlaxoSmithKline requested that these cases be dismissed. This motion was later dismissed by overseeing Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV, but it has been reported that it will be able to be requested again in the future. Plaintiffs responded to GSK's request for dismissal, by noting that there was, "reason to believe that GSK had important evidence about the defects alleged [...], and the link to Zofran." To better illustrate this point, plaintiffs pulled in concerning information from the results from several "animal teratogenicity studies" which GSK had arranged be conducted in Japan. The study results seem to link animal fetal Zofran exposure to the development of congenital heart defects, an allegation that many plaintiffs who used the drug while pregnant say has happened to their own children. Plaintiffs claim that the Japanese studies highlighted pregnant animals who were exposed to Zofran and who subsequently gave birth to offspring with ventricular septal defects of the heart. They additionally indicate that these important studies took place after the drug had been given FDA approval for U.S. sales. A common point of contention, however, is that Zofran was never FDA-approved to treat expectant mothers or tested for safety on this consumer group. Despite this fact, however, manufacturer GSK reportedly went on to market the drug as a safe and effective treatment for nausea associated with morning sickness. If the concerning test result allegations are proven to be true, pharmaceutical giant GSK could face increasing public scrutiny for potentially concealing their product's possible connection to the development of fetal birth defects. Originally posted by Michael Monheit on Digital Journal. Fetal Zofran Exposure - Ball & Bonholtzer Trial Attorney - Los Angeles

Attorney Defrauds Elderly In Ponzi Scheme, Per SEC

Attorney accused by SEC of defrauding retirees in litigation funding Ponzi scheme.

The SEC is suing an attorney and a legal marketer in federal court over an alleged Ponzi scheme in which the two men are accused of defrauding 250 people, mostly seniors, out of $12 million in a lawsuit investment scam.

Michigan tax attorney James A. Catipay and Washington state legal marketer David A. Aldridge, as well as their company Prometheus Law, are accused of four counts of securities

Attorney Accused Of Defrauding Elderly In Ponzi Scheme

SEC claims attorney defrauded retirees out of millions in Ponzi scheme involving investing in lawsuits.

Michigan tax attorney James A. Catipay and Washington state legal marketer David A. Aldridge are being sued by the SEC in federal court for allegedly running a Ponzi scheme in which they defrauded  over 250 people, mostly seniors, out of almost $12 million in a lawsuit investment scam. The April 15 lawsuit charges the men and their company, Prometheus Law, with four counts of securities fraud. The scheme capitalized on the growing business of "litigation funding," in which investors underwrite attorneys' high-dollar commercial lawsuits, in hope of profiting from settlements. Catipay and Aldridge took money from small investors, allegedly to fund personal injury and mass tort cases, but the SEC says it was a Ponzi scheme. "Catipay and Aldrich spent millions of dollars on personal items, including a million-dollar loft in downtown Los Angeles and paying Aldrich's personal income taxes. So when the first approximately $120,000 of investor returns came due, the defendants used money raised from new investors to pay the existing investors -- payments that both Catipay and Aldrich admitted were, in fact, Ponzi payments," the SEC says in the lengthy complaint. They defrauded investors "by repeatedly downplaying the risks associated with their investments and the fact that their entire business model was unrealistic to afford the exorbitant returns promised," Michele Layne, the head of the SEC's Los Angeles office, said in a statement. Catipay and Aldridge told victims their money "is never at risk," the SEC says, citing the defendants' 2014 "information packet." They promised to spend the money lining up plaintiffs to bring class actions against drug companies and medical device makers, and guaranteed returns of 100 to 300 percent, according to the complaint. They offered what they called "forward contracts" that would pay off after a specific number of months, and said the mass tort cases "had settlement funds just waiting in escrow to be claimed," the SEC says. But "In fact, the investments were highly speculative and risky." Also, the SEC says, it is illegal for an attorney and a non-lawyer -- such as Aldridge and the 250 investors -- to share legal fees. Such fee-splitting "is widely prohibited, and therefore potentially unenforceable." Aldridge came up with the idea to market investments in medical litigation in mid-2013, but had trouble finding a lawyer to join him. Before meeting Catipay, he interviewed approximately 100 attorneys, who all "declined because of the ethical prohibition against fee-sharing with non-lawyers," according the complaint. After beginning in October 2013, Aldridge and Catipay's venture attracted $11.7 million, generally in small investments ranging from $5,000 to $10,000. The two struck a deal with a personal injury lawyer in Seattle -- called "Attorney A" in the complaint -- to represent any tort plaintiffs they found and to give their company one-third of any fees he collected. But they spent only about a third of the investors' money on looking for tort plaintiffs. And by early this year, those marketing efforts had returned less than $10,000 in attorneys' fees from the plaintiffs, the SEC said. The men spent most of the money on themselves. Aldridge withdrew $3.7 million of the investors' money, including $1 million to buy a condo and another $1 million to pay state and federal taxes, the SEC says. Catipay took $1.87 million for himself. After a dispute and lawsuit between the partners, Catipay acquired Aldridge's condo in a settlement. The SEC seeks freezing of assets, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains and civil penalties. Originally posted by on Don J. DeBenedictus on Courthouse News Service. Ponzi Scheme - Ball & Bonholtzer Trial Attorney - Los Angeles

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