State Bar of California California Bar Journal
Home Page Official Publication of the State Bar of California January2009
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Fraud
Award: $31,000,000
Defendants managed to wrest control of a Korean venture capital firm through a series of fraudulent maneuvers (Optional Capital Inc. v. Kim, Central District Federal Court, Plaintiff attorney: Ralph Rogari).

Fatal rollover
Award: $1,987,500
Two people were killed and three injured in a single-vehicle rollover accident involving a Chevrolet Suburban (Shaver v. General Motors Corp., Riverside County Superior Court, Plaintiff attorney: Michael F. Avila).

Title insurance
Award: $1,770,000
Title insurance company refused to pay a claim after loans on property went into default (Creative Investment Group Inc. v. First American Title Insurance Co., Los Angeles County Superior Court, Plaintiff attorney: Bruce M. Bunch).

Helicopter collision
Award: $9,268,206
Student helicopter pilot was severely injured when his craft collided in mid-air with another helicopter while attempting to land as a result of negligent traffic information given by the air traffic controllers (Bailey v. United States of America, Central District Federal Court, Plaintiff attorney: James L. Pocrass).

Golfing accident
Award: $10,250,000
Boy attending golf camp sustained a severe brain injury when another camper swung his club and hit plaintiff in the head (Butterfield v. Nike Golf Schools and Junior Camps, Alameda County Superior Court, Plaintiff attorney: William B. Smith).

Retaliatory discipline
Award: $3,127,500
LAPD officer suffered harassment and retaliation from fellow officers for filing several work-related complaints (Hill v. City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Superior Court, Plaintiff attorney: Gregory W. Smith).

Mini-bar leak
Award: $557,000
Guest suffered respiratory injuries after the mini-bar in his hotel room sprang a leak and dispersed ammonia while he slept (McConnell v. Ritz Carlton Hotel Corp., Los Angeles County Superior Court, Plaintiff attorney: Steven R. Vartazarian).

FMLA Violation
Award: $882,000

CORRECTION

The following summary more accurately reflects a jury verdict reported in December.

Defendant prevailed on race/national origin claims. Plaintiff’s $882,000 FMLA verdict reduced to $57,000 on JNOV. (Fitzpatrick v. Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Ltd., Orange County Superior Court, Plaintiff attorney: James A. Rainboldt).

Editor's Note: California Bar Journal publishes this abbreviated summary of important trials in California provided by Trials Digest, a Thomson West business. To report your case results, go to west.thomson.com/trialsdigest/form.asp or call 415-344-6000.

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