A Missouri federal judge on Tuesday reduced a $159 million verdict awarded to the family of a man shot while riding an Amtrak train to $44 million, saying while Amtrak's conduct showed an "indifference or reckless disregard of the safety of others," the punitive damages the jury awarded were excessive.
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WEDNESDAY, JULY 17, 2024 Law360 iOS App Law360 Android App Follow Law360 on Facebook Follow Law360 on LinkedIn Follow Law360 on Twitter

TOP NEWS

Amtrak Slashes $159M Award Over Passenger Death To $44M

By Bonnie Eslinger

A Missouri federal judge on Tuesday reduced a $159 million verdict awarded to the family of a man shot while riding an Amtrak train to $44 million, saying while Amtrak's conduct showed an "indifference or reckless disregard of the safety of others," the punitive damages the jury awarded were excessive.

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Delta's $16M Pay Stub Deal Scores Initial OK

By Irene Spezzamonte

A California federal judge signed off on a $16 million deal Tuesday settling a suit accusing Delta Air Lines of wage statement violations under the California Labor Code and Private Attorneys General Act, finding the deal fair and reasonable.

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JB Hunt To Pay $4.2M To End Wash. Pay Range Suit

By Abby Wargo

J.B. Hunt Transport will fork over $4.2 million to a class of 2,200 job applicants to settle a lawsuit accusing the freight company of failing to include salary ranges in job postings and violating Washington state law, according to a court order tentatively approving the deal.

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DC Circ. Knocks La. Site FERC Order, Tosses LNG Export Row

By Tom Lotshaw

Two D.C. Circuit panels on Tuesday ruled the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission inadequately explained a failure to assess the significance of greenhouse gas emissions for proposed liquefied natural gas facilities in Louisiana, dismissing a challenge of approvals allowing a Texas project to send more of its LNG exports to nonfree trade agreement countries.

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Google Maps Antitrust Suit Deleted For Good

By Bryan Koenig

A California federal judge permanently dismissed a proposed class action targeting Google's Maps product, rejecting arguments that the company's terms of service barred third parties from using rival route guidance or places-of-interest tools with a Google-furnished map.

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Carnival Can't Get Out Of Woman's Cruise Ship Fall Suit

By Mike Curley

A Florida federal judge won't dismiss a woman's claims against Carnival Corp. over injuries she suffered from a fall on one of the cruise line's ships that she blames on an "undetectable" slope on a walkway between decks.

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No Immunity For Philadelphia Transit In Bus-Stop Injury

By Jonathan Capriel

The Philadelphia-area transit system can't escape a lawsuit accusing one of its bus drivers of refusing to lower a handicap accessible ramp, resulting in a passenger twisting her leg while exiting the vehicle, a state appeals court ruled, saying the claims fall squarely with the motor-vehicle exception to sovereign immunity.

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DIVERSITY SNAPSHOT

The 2024 Diversity Snapshot: What You Need To Know

By Xiumei Dong

Law firms' ongoing initiatives to address diversity challenges have driven another year of progress, with the representation of minority attorneys continuing to improve across the board, albeit at a slower pace than in previous years. Here's our data dive into minority representation at law firms in 2023.

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These Firms Have The Most Diverse Equity Partnerships

By Gerald Schifman

Law360’s law firm survey shows that firms' efforts to diversify their equity partner ranks are lagging. But some have embraced a broader talent pool at the equity partner level. Here are the ones that stood out.

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AUTOMOTIVE

Tesla Says Chinese Co. Sells 'Dangerous' Charging Adapter

By Emily Field

Tesla said on Monday that a Chinese company sells a "dangerous" charging adapter that lets owners of non-Tesla electric vehicles charge at its network, saying in a suit filed in California federal court that the device could injure consumers and damage the power infrastructure.

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Santander Says Boston Tow Policy Violates Its Rights

By Julie Manganis

Boston's policy of allowing tow companies to auction off vehicles to cover the cost of towing and storage violates the due process rights of lenders who hold a security interest, Santander Consumer USA said in a complaint filed on Monday in federal court.

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ENERGY

Puerto Rico Launches Climate Suit Against Fossil Fuel Cos.

By Madeline Lyskawa

The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico has accused Exxon Mobil Corp., BP PLC, Chevron Corp. and other petrochemical companies of deceiving the public about the effects associated with the use and burning of fossil fuels on the island, resulting in severe damage to Puerto Rico's natural resources.

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Enbridge Seeks 6th Circ. Rehearing In Venue Dispute

By Joyce Hanson

Enbridge Energy LP has asked the full Sixth Circuit to rehear an appellate panel's decision to send the company's pipeline dispute with Michigan's attorney general back to state court, arguing that the opinion creates a conflict within the circuit over when the removal clock starts running.

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AVIATION

Tycoon's Pilot Says Feds' Stock Tip Claims Don't Add Up

By Ayden Crosby

A private pilot who used to work for convicted insider trader and U.K. billionaire Joe Lewis is arguing federal prosecutors can't use allegations that his own trades were suspicious to ramp up a sentence for a separate tax evasion charge.

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Flight Student Blames Canadian Airplane Co. For NC Crash

By Hayley Fowler

Diamond Aircraft Industries Inc. has been hit with a federal lawsuit claiming the Canadian aircraft manufacturer designed and sold a defective single-engine, four-seater plane that had to be crash-landed on an interstate in the mountains of North Carolina during a training flight.

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MARITIME

Ex-Mozambique Official Accused Of $2B Fraud As Trial Opens

By Frank G. Runyeon

Federal prosecutors told a Manhattan jury Tuesday that Mozambique's former finance minister took $7 million in bribes in a "corrupt" plot to enrich himself and defraud investors after $2 billion in state-backed development projects flopped.

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EXPERT ANALYSIS

What Happens After Hawaii Kids' Historic Climate Deal

Implications of the Hawaii Department of Transportation's first-of-its-kind settlement with youth plaintiffs over constitutional climate claims may be limited, but it could incite similar claims, says J. Michael Showalter and Robert Middleton at ArentFox Schiff.

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'Outsourcing' Ruling, 5 Years On: A Warning, Not A Watershed

A New York federal court’s 2019 ruling in U.S. v. Connolly, holding that the government improperly outsourced an investigation to Deutsche Bank, has not undercut corporate cooperation incentives as feared — but companies should not completely ignore the lessons of the case, say Temidayo Aganga-Williams and Anna Nabutovsky at Selendy Gay.

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Big Business May Come To Rue The Post-Administrative State

Many have framed the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decisions overturning Chevron deference and extending the window to challenge regulations as big wins for big business, but sand in the gears of agency rulemaking may be a double-edged sword, creating prolonged uncertainty that impedes businesses’ ability to plan for the future, says Todd Baker at Columbia University.

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Series

Serving In The National Guard Makes Me A Better Lawyer

My ongoing military experience as a judge advocate general in the National Guard has shaped me as a person and a lawyer, teaching me the importance of embracing confidence, balance and teamwork in both my Army and civilian roles, says Danielle Aymond at Baker Donelson.

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LEGAL INDUSTRY

Analysis

3 Reasons Why 2nd Menendez Bribery Case Was The Charm

By Carla Baranauckas

Nearly seven years after the government's first bribery case against longtime U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez collapsed in a hung jury, prosecutors avenged that loss Tuesday by sealing a conviction on a new round of corruption charges.

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Menendez Guilty Of 'Shocking Corruption,' Urged To Resign

By Cara Salvatore, Pete Brush and Carla Baranauckas

A New York federal jury found U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez guilty on Tuesday of taking gold bars, cash and a Mercedes-Benz as bribes from three businessmen, handing a victory to the government on its second try to convict the embattled New Jersey Democrat on corruption charges and prompting calls for his resignation.

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Trump Special Prosecutor Ruling Could Find Favor On Appeal

By Carolina Bolado

When U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon dismissed the criminal case against former President Donald Trump in Florida over what she said was an unconstitutional appointment of a special prosecutor, she staked out a position that few other jurists have taken, but that could find support among some appellate judges, experts said.

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Ex-Trump Counsel Has Advice For GOP On Judicial Noms

By Courtney Bublé

A former Trump White House official who worked on judicial nominations has advised a potential future Republican administration to be aggressive, proactive and not to compromise on circuit court picks.

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Smirnov Wants David Weiss DQ'd After Trump Docs Ruling

By Hailey Konnath

Former FBI informant Alexander Smirnov said Monday that a Florida federal judge's order disqualifying the special prosecutor in the Donald Trump classified documents case means special counsel David Weiss should also be disqualified from Smirnov's case, according to a motion filed in California federal court.

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Fed. Circ. OKs Judge Connolly's Fine Against IP Biz Owner

By Andrew Karpan

A precedential ruling from the Federal Circuit on Tuesday found that Delaware's top judge has the right to fine a Texas paralegal who is the sole owner of patent litigation outfit Backertop Licensing LLC $200 a day for refusing to show up in court as part of the judge's investigation into whether Backertop and others hid their connection to big-name intellectual property consulting firm IP Edge.

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Musk Says X, SpaceX Moving To Texas Over Calif. Gender Law

By Lauren Berg

Elon Musk took to X Tuesday to announce he will be moving the headquarters of the social media company and his astronautics company, SpaceX, out of California to Texas, after Golden State Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill that bars policies mandating that teachers notify parents about students' gender identity.

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$4.5M Davis Wright Deal In Ore. Fraud Suit Gets Final OK

By Sydney Price

An Oregon federal judge has fully adopted a magistrate judge's recommendation to sign off on a $4.5 million deal resolving investor claims against law firm Davis Wright Tremaine LLP for its work representing entities involved in an alleged real estate securities fraud scheme, while two banks were dismissed from the case.

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Tesla Swaps Cravath Out, WilmerHale In For Antitrust Defense

By Lauren Berg

WilmerHale has taken over from Cravath Swaine & Moore LLP as counsel for Tesla in a proposed class action in California federal court alleging the company runs an unlawful monopoly on parts for its electric vehicles.

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ACLU Legal Director Leaving For Expanded Georgetown Role

By Kevin Penton

The American Civil Liberties Union's national legal director plans to step down from a role he has held for eight years, the organization confirmed Tuesday.

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Groups Slam UC Berkeley's 'Misreading' Of Antisemitism Case

By Jake Maher

Jewish organizations suing the University of California, Berkeley, and its law school for allegedly tolerating an antisemitic culture on campus fought to keep their suit alive this week in the face of a motion to dismiss, maintaining their claims are ripe despite UC Berkeley's "bold misreading" of the case.

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COMPANIES IN TODAY'S NEWS

Alphabet Inc.

Amazon.com Inc.

American Civil Liberties Union

American Honda Finance Corp.

BP PLC

Balentine

Carnival Corp. & PLC

Center for Biological Diversity Inc.

Chester Water Authority

Chevron Corp.

Cottrell Inc.

Credit Suisse Group AG

Delta Air Lines Inc.

Deutsche Bank AG

Enbridge Energy Partners LP

Exxon Mobil Corp.

Golden Pass LNG Terminal LLC

Google LLC

Hawaii Electric Light Co. Inc.

J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc.

LinkedIn Corp.

Mercedes-Benz USA LLC

Mirati Therapeutics Inc.

National Rifle Association of America

Natural Resources Defense Council

Pacific Premier Bancorp Inc.

Regents of the University of California

Riverview Bancorp Inc.

Roadrunner Transportation Systems Inc.

Santander Consumer USA Inc.

Sierra Club

Solid Biosciences Inc.

Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority

Space Exploration Technologies Corp.

Sunoco LP

Tesla Inc.

The Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

eBay Inc.

LAW FIRMS IN TODAY'S NEWS

Ackermann & Tilajef

Akin Gump

ArentFox Schiff

Arnold & Porter

Atheria Law

Atkinson Andelson

Baker Botts

Baker Donelson

Berry Appleman

Best Best & Krieger

Boies Schiller

Bookoff McAndrews

Buchalter APC

Buckley LLP

Cahill Gordon

Carlton Fields

Chamberlain Hrdlicka

Cleary Gottlieb

Coburn & Greenbaum

Continental PLLC

Cooley LLP

Cravath Swaine

Crowell & Moring

Cuneo Gilbert

Davis & Wright

Davis Wright Tremaine LLP

Diaz Reus

Dickinson Wright

Ellis George LLP

Esler Stephens

Farella Braun

Finger & Slanina

Finnegan

Fragomen Del Rey

Freed Kanner

Fullerton Beck

Gibbons PC

Glancy Prongay

Gross Klein

Hickey Law Firm PA

Hogan Lovells

Holland & Knight

Irell & Manella

Jones Day

K&L Gates

Kasowitz Benson

Keker Van Nest & Peters

Knobbe Martens

Kudman Trachten

Landman Corsi

Larkins Vacura

Lozano Smith

Manning & Kass

Morgan Lewis

Morrison Foerster

Munger Tolles

Nelson Mullins

Nematzadeh PLLC

Nichols Kaster

Norris McLaughlin

Nossaman LLP

Orrick Herrington

Pangia Law Group

Paternoster Farnell

Paul Hastings

Pearson Warshaw

Perkins Coie

Riley Safer

Roig Lawyers

Saveri & Saveri

Scharnhorst Ast

Schneider Wallace

Scopelitis Garvin

Seed IP

Selendy Gay

Sher Edling

Shutts & Bowen

Squire Patton

Steptoe LLP

Sterne Kessler

Stoll Berne

Summit Law Group

The Law Firm of Cesar de Castro

Tostrud Law Group

Tueth Keeney

Waymaker LLP

White & Case

Willkie Farr

WilmerHale

Wilson Sonsini

Winston & Strawn

Withersworldwide

Wong Fleming

Zuber Lawler

GOVERNMENT AGENCIES IN TODAY'S NEWS

California Supreme Court

Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Federal Bureau of Investigation

Federal Communications Commission

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

Federal Reserve System

Federal Trade Commission

Hawaii Department of Transportation

Michigan Attorney General's Office

Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Montana Legislature

National Labor Relations Board

National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York

U.S. Civilian Board of Contract Appeals

U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

U.S. Department of Energy

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. Department of the Treasury

U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts

U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

U.S. Senate

U.S. Supreme Court

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin