“For the second time in less than a week, class action law firm Labaton Sucharow has been reprimanded for overreaching in its attempts to lead a major securities fraud action.” Having attained lead counsel status in one class action against American International Group, the firm sought to combine that case with others pending elsewhere that raised quite different claims against the much-sued insurer.
“As is readily apparent here, lead plaintiff’s Motion for Leave to Amend to add unrelated claims is a calculated attempt at judge shopping,” [Southern District of New York federal judge John] Sprizzo wrote. “It seems apparent that lead plaintiff is trying to usurp lead plaintiff status over claims which are properly in front of other judges.”
The decision came just three days after Southern District of New York Judge Jed S. Rakoff admonished Labaton Sucharow attorneys for perhaps not “fulfill[ing] their professional responsibilities” in their proposal of a co-lead plaintiff in In Re Monster Worldwide Securities Litigation, 07 Civ. 2237.
(Mark Fass, “Labaton’s Newest Bid to Lead Major Securities Fraud Action Rejected”, New York Law Journal, Jul. 22).