Posts Tagged ‘roy kronk v casey anthony’

The federal bankruptcy judge ruled today that both Zenaida Gonzalez’s and Roy Kronk’s lawsuits can move forward in federal court.  Casey Anthony most likely now faces a deposition in the Gonzalez case.  Both sides agree that the deposition will not be published and the time and location will not be revealed.  U.S. Bankruptcy Judge K. Rodney May declined to dismiss the two lawsuits though he ordered Kronk to amend his complaint before it moves forward.

Anthony’s lawyers argued that Gonzalez’s claim is based upon one out-of-context remark Anthony made to her mother.  May ruled there was “disputed issues of fact” sufficient for further proceedings.  In the Kronk complaint, Anthony’s lawyers argued that Anthony cannot be held liable for what her attorneys say.  Kronk’s lawyer, Howard Marks, countered saying attorneys act upon their client’s behalf and consent.

Marks said, “The fact that Ms. Anthony didn’t state it doesn’t get her anywhere.”

May ordered Anthony’s lawyers, David Schrader and Debra Ferwerda to pay Gonzalez’s lawyer Scott Shuker $500 for not consulting him on the motion to block the deposition.  Shuker claimed the motion was a waste of time because he would have willingly met with Anthony’s attorneys about security issues.

“…I’m not interested in publicity,” Shuker said.  Following the last hearing, Shuker became irate after the judge adjourned the hearing.  He used expletive language and personal insults to express thoughts about opposing counsel.  Shuker was asked to leave the courtroom following his outburst.  After getting outside, he told reporters, “You were there” when asked why he was so upset.  Ferwerda and Schrader shrugged off the encounter saying, “it was the heat of the moment”, but admitted it was “startling” because there had never been problems before.

Schrader countered Shuker’s publicity argument pointing out that they “learned about the deposition in the newspaper,” after Matt Morgan, another Gonzalez lawyer, talked with the media about it instead of talking with them about concerns and logistics.  It is unclear if Casey Anthony will assert her Fifth Amendment rights during the deposition.  The decisions on whether the cases meet the “willful and malicious” defamation legal requirement will come sometime next year.

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During a contentious hearing in federal bankruptcy court the judge in Casey Anthony’s bankruptcy proceeding delayed his ruling on whether or not Casey Anthony should have to submit to a deposition.  Previous media reports by WESH 2 were inaccurate.  Attorneys for Zenaida Gonzalez are fighting to salvage their civil suit amidst Anthony’s Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  Gonzalez had wanted to question Anthony last week, but Anthony’s attorneys filed a protection order against it.  Currently, Anthony’s attorneys have a pending motion seeking to dismiss Zenaida Gonzalez’s lawsuit amongst others (i.e. Roy Kronk’s).  That hearing will be on November 5th.  Debra Ferwerda, Anthony’s attorney, argued that Anthony may never be deposed and shouldn’t have to face questioning, “without the court deciding if [they] even have a case.”

One of Gonzalez’s attorneys, Scott Shuker told the judge he was fine with waiting until after November 5th and even accepted all of the terms that Anthony’s attorneys put forward.  “I don’t care if we take it in your chambers…I don’t care if we seal it,” he told Judge K. Rodney May.

Judge May seemed frustrated about the lack of communication between the two sides, “I don’t want to hear about what hasn’t been done…I want to hear how we can move forward.” At the end of the hearing, the judge ruled that he would defer the deposition issue until after he decides whether or not Gonzalez’s claim has merit, “We don’t need to set a deposition if I do dismiss.”

Shuker was agitated throughout the hearing and lashed out at Anthony’s attorney, David Schrader, afterwards.  He called him a “bush league” attorney, slang for below standard, poor, pitiful, or awful.  He also added, “You used to have a good reputation.”  Shuker didn’t comment to reporters, out of character for Gonzalez’s attorneys, and just rushed past the reporters.  Schrader and Ferwerda brushed off his outburst and expressed confidence about moving forward and if the judge should decide that there should be a deposition, they said they would figure out how to handle it.

Zenaida Gonzalez claims that she was defamed when Casey Anthony told investigators that a woman named Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez kidnapped her missing 2-year-old daughter.  Gonzalez faces an uphill battle, including the fact that Casey Anthony created Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez 2 years before the incident, the two share no similarities, and Casey Anthony specifically ruled Gonzalez out when shown a photo lineup.  Roy Kronk, a meter reader, who discovered Caylee Anthony’s remains, says he was defamed when Anthony’s defense team said he moved the remains.  He also faces an uphill battle, including the fact that he isn’t saying that Anthony defamed him, but rather her attorney’s did, whom he isn’t suing.

Zenaida Gonzalez’s attorneys planned to depose Casey Anthony on Wednesday, but her attorneys have asked the federal judge in the bankruptcy case to prevent her from having to answer questions until at least after he rules on pending dismissal motions in November.

Referring to Gonzalez as a “principal orchestrator of the media circus,” her lawyers write that Gonzalez’s claim lacks merit, and the deposition was scheduled inappropriately without their consultation or notice.

“Gonzalez has used a lawsuit…as a platform for publicity and other purposes ulterior to and detrimental to the judicial process,” the motion states, she is on a “quest for publicity”.

The motion goes on to say that, if the deposition is allowed to proceed, Anthony will decline to answer questions and plead the Fifth Amendment.  Also in the motion, Anthony’s lawyers ask if Judge May is going to allow the deposition to move forward if Casey Anthony can appear via video instead of in person.  They have also asked that the deposition be sealed from the public and the media, and that Anthony shouldn’t have to disclose certain personal information, such as where she is living.

Gonzalez’s attorney, Matt Morgan, claimed when he scheduled the deposition that Casey Anthony couldn’t plead the Fifth Amendment because her criminal appeals were resolved.

David Schrader, Anthony’s attorney, also stated that she was already deposed in the state court,

“Although Gonzalez’ counsel has repeatedly told the press and others that his goal in this case is to ‘break Ms. Anthony’s story,’ he will not do so and should not be allowed to put Ms. Anthony through another argumentative and abusive proceeding…” Schrader said.

Casey Anthony told detectives in 2008 that she had a babysitter for 2 years named Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez and she kidnapped her missing daughter.  Gonzalez claims that those statements defamed her and that she should be considered a creditor in the bankruptcy.

In an email to the media, Morgan stated, “We know she doesn’t want to answer, that doesn’t mean she shouldn’t have to.”

RELATED:  Casey Anthony’s Lawyers Ask Judge to Dismiss Claims Against Her