Thursday, September 29, 2016


Gene Stearns is at it again, this time winning the Bank Atlantic case on appeal in the 11th Circuit. The court ordered a new trial after a 6-week trial. It's a significant win (but an unpublished opinion) and one that Gene predicted from the beginning.  The conclusion:

Accordingly, we reverse the district court’s grant of summary judgment with respect to the falsity finding of Levan’s Earnings Call statements and the affirmative defense of reliance-on-professional-advice. We affirm the district court’s rejection of judgment as a matter of law with respect to the accounting fraud and its pre-trial evidentiary rulings regarding the testimony of the SEC’s expert, Lynn Turner, and PwC’s 2012 look back report. Because the reversal of partial summary judgment creates genuine issues of material fact that require resolution, we decline to enter judgment in favor of Defendants.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Another Johnson case leads to 3 opinions

This time it's United States v. Vail-Baron. Judge Rosenbaum writes the majority. Judge Jordan concurred. And visiting judge Eugene Siler (from the 6th) dissents. Judge Rosenbaum starts off her opinion this way:
When I was growing up, my parents told me not to judge a book by its cover. The Supreme Court has expressed an analogous concern about concluding that a crime qualifies as a violent crime under the Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”), based solely on the name of the crime. See Johnson v. United States, ___ U.S. ___, 135 S. Ct. 2551, 2560 (2015) (discussing whether Connecticut’s offense of “rioting at a correctional institution,” a crime that the Supreme Court characterized as “certainly sound[ing] like a violent felony,” qualifies as a violent felony under the residual clause of the ACCA).1
This case raises the question of whether the Florida crime of felony battery—a crime that, from its name, may sound like a crime of violence—actually satisfies the definition of “crime of violence” under §2L1.2 of the Sentencing Guidelines when it is committed by mere touching. Heeding the Supreme Court’s warning, we have carefully compared the elements of felony battery under Florida law to the “elements clause” of § 2L1.2’s definition of “crime of violence.” Based on our review, we now hold that felony battery under Fla. Stat. § 784.041 does not qualify as a “crime of violence” under § 2L1.2 when it is committed by mere touching. For this reason, we vacate Vail-Bailon’s sentence and remand for resentencing.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

"A very against police judge."

That was The Donald last night during the debate when discussing stop & frisk:

We didn't get any questions on the Supreme Court though...

Instead we got quite a bit of sniffles. I would have felt bad for him had he not been attacking Hillary's health for the past 3 weeks:

OK, OK... enough of that. The highlight of the night was Dee Gordon. I could watch this over and over again:

Monday, September 26, 2016

Will tonight's debate feature UFOs?

What was that percentage?!?!

I like this moment when Bill defends Hillary.

Should be fun tonight.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Justice Federico Moreno?

Former Chief Judge of the SDFLA, Federico Moreno, has made Donald Trump's short-list for Supreme Court Justices.  I love it.  Judge Moreno, who has been a district judge since 1990, would make a fantastic Justice.  He's smart, witty, engaging, and an all around good guy. 

He would be the first Supreme Court Justice to be a:

  • Floridian
  • Venezuelan
  • former practicing criminal defense lawyer
  • former assistant federal defender
  • UM law grad
He's also been a state court judge and a practicing lawyer.  He currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Courts. 

 Other notables on the list include Charles Canady, a current Florida Supreme Court Justice.