Weekly Briefs: Kirkland tops $6B in revenue; another Pop-Tarts suit is tossed
Kirkland likely No. 1 for revenue
Last year Kirkland & Ellis had gross revenue of $6.042 billion and average profits per partner of more than $7.3 million. With those numbers, Kirkland will likely keep its No. 1 spot in the American Lawyer’s rankings for the fifth year in a row. The firm has more than 3,000 lawyers. (Law.com)
Another Pop-Tarts lawsuit is tossed
U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter of Manhattan has dismissed a lawsuit that contends consumers are misled about the amount of strawberries in frosted strawberry Pop-Tarts. Carter said reasonable consumers would be “unlikely to purchase a toaster pastry coated in frosting exclusively for the nutritional value of strawberries in its fruit filling.” A different judge tossed a similar lawsuit last month targeting unfrosted strawberry Pop-Tarts. (Reuters)
Roberts joins dissent criticizing shadow docket
Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. criticized the Supreme Court’s emergency “shadow docket” for the first time on Wednesday by joining a dissent in a case concerning the Clean Water Act. Five justices in the majority had issued an emergency order that reinstated a Trump-era water quality rule during the appellate process. The rule makes it harder for states to block projects that could cause pollution in streams and rivers.
In the dissent, Justice Elena Kagan said there had been no showing of irreparable harm that is needed for court action. “That renders the court’s emergency docket not for emergencies at all,” she said. “The docket becomes only another place for merits determinations—except made without full briefing and argument.” (Law.com, Law360, the Washington Post, Kagan’s dissent)
Harassment case against prominent lawyer is dropped
A special prosecutor has dropped a telephone harassment case against prominent San Antonio lawyer Martin Phipps. The case, based on texts Phipps sent to his then-wife, was dropped because of a lack of evidence. Phipps had represented Bexar County in opioid litigation. (Texas Public Radio)
Lawyer who represented Jan. 6 defendants to appeal disbarment order
A Virginia lawyer who represented several defendants charged in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot is appealing a state court disbarment order. No details were available on the reason for the disbarment of lawyer Jonathon Moseley. But the Virginia State Bar said in a notice that Moseley was disbarred for violating “professional rules that govern safekeeping property; meritorious claims and contentions; candor toward the tribunal; fairness to opposing party and counsel; unauthorized practice of law, multijurisdictional practice of law; bar admission and disciplinary matters; judicial officials; and misconduct.”
One of Moseley’s clients is Kelly Meggs, who was the Florida leader of Oath Keepers. Mosely told Reuters that Meggs is aware of the issue. “I’ve been trying for months to get additional attorneys and they’re not out there. So obviously it’d be good for Kelly Meggs to get another attorney, but that doesn’t mean they just magically appear,” Moseley said. (Reuters, Politico, Above the Law)
Bill would require SCOTUS code of conduct
Seven Democratic lawmakers have introduced a bill that would require the U.S. Supreme Court to create a code of conduct or adopt the code that applies to other federal judges. The legislation, called the 21st Century Courts Act, would also set new recusal standards, require additional disclosures for amicus briefs, and require video livestreaming of proceedings before the U.S. Supreme Court and federal appeals courts.
“The Supreme Court shouldn’t be given some special pass because it is the highest court,” said one of the bill’s sponsors, Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut. (Law360, Reuters)