The integrity of America’s civil justice system is being corrupted by trial lawyers who are gaming the system for their personal financial gain. Over the past few years, a number of high-profile plaintiffs’ attorneys have been caught in the act, prosecuted and sentenced to prison for everything from deceiving their clients and providing illegal kickbacks to promoting fraud and bribing judges.
- In 2008, Mississippi lawyer Dickie Scruggs – portrayed in the movie “The Insider” – pleaded guilty to conspiring to bribe a judge and is currently serving a seven-year sentence in federal prison.
- Bill Lerach and Mel Weiss are each serving time in jail for criminal conspiracy for paying millions of dollars in illegal kickbacks to lead plaintiffs in class action law suits in order to help the lawyers win the race to the courtroom.
- Kentucky plaintiffs’ lawyers William Gallion and Shirley Cunningham Jr. were jailed and orderd to pay disgorgement of the $30 million they scammed from their clients in a settlement over the diet-drug fen-phen.
The jailing of some of the biggest names in the lawsuit industry exposes a culture of greed and corruption that seems to be growing within the plaintiffs’ trial bar. Allegations of trial lawyer fraud and abuse continue to be widespread, particularly in the arenas of securities class actions, asbestos litigation and, increasingly, Alien Tort Statute suits brought in other nations.