LEONARDTOWN, Md. – In the federal lawsuit naming several notable members of Southern Maryland and beyond, the legal representation on both sides are helping shape the magnitude of the case.
The civil complaint brought by Compass Marketing is seeking $1.2 billion, alleging the loss of hundreds of millions in lost revenue from an eCommerce business that was built off years of stolen trade secrets and intellectual property. The suit names seven defendants, including St. Mary’s County Orphans Court Judge Michael White, St. Mary’s County Deputy States Attorney Dan White, Maryland State Trooper George White, former UMMS Chair and a former Maryland Governor Robert Ehrlich’s Chief of Staff James “Chip” DiPaula, Patrick Miller, Flywheel Digital, and Ascential PLC.
TheBayNet.com also discovered a criminal complaint brought against the defendants after filing a Maryland Public Information Act request.
On April 15, former U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein of King and Spaulding LLP entered the trial, serving as legal counsel to the plaintiff, Compass Marketing. Rosenstein, who served at the U.S. Department of Justice under George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump, joins seven additional attorneys representing Compass. This is Rosenstein’s first case since leaving the Department of Justice, where he has entered an appearance.
King and Spaulding are one of the largest global law firms, which is also the firm where former Maryland Governor Ehrlich is affiliated.
Six additional attorneys from Morgan Lewis and Bockius LLP are representing Compass. Morgan Lewis and Bockius specialize in representing most businesses that rank on Fortune lists of top businesses nationally and internationally.
On the other side, each of the seven defendants has obtained legal assistance in different groupings. Flywheel Digital, Ascential PLC, Miller, and DiPaula have all had five attorneys enter proceedings on their behalf.
One of the more notable attorneys representing them is Michael Keats of Fried Frank Harris Shriver and Jacobson LLP. Keats’ biography lists one of his specialties as “bet-the-company litigation,” serving as the managing director of Goldman Sachs’ litigation and enforcement during the 2008 financial crisis.
Keats is joined by two other Fried Frank attorneys, Arthur Kutoroff and Rebecca Martin, as well as two attorneys from the largest law firm in Maryland, Venable LLP.
Soon after Rosenstein entered his appearance, DiPaula and Miller brought in two additional attorneys, David Hamilton, and Sarah Meyer of Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP. Hamilton, an experienced criminal defense attorney, was a former partner alongside Governor Ehrlich and has represented DiPaula in previous litigation.
Michael and George White, a father and son, are being represented by Jeffrey M. Schwaber and Judith G. Cornwell of Stein Sperling Bennett De Jong Driscoll PC, a top law firm based out of Rockville, Maryland. Schwaber’s biography lists several achievements including when he helped win “the largest civil jury verdict in the history of the Montgomery County Circuit Court, vindicating the rights of an individual inventor against an enormous corporate defendant.”
Dan White, who served as the legal counsel for Compass for several years, has brought in assistance from Bruce L Marcus and Sydney M Patterson of MarcusBonsib LLC. Marcus served as Special Counsel to Prince George’s County, Maryland from 1988 through 1994, and now regularly handles criminal and civil matters in local, state, and federal courts.
At this time, attorneys for Ascential, Flywheel, DiPaula, and Miller have filed a motion to dismiss the case due to being “time-barred,” that claims are “inadequately pleaded,” and that the courts have no jurisdiction over Ascential, which is based in the United Kingdom. No motions have been filed regarding Michael, George, or Dan White.
Read the full request to dismiss below:
Three days after the motion to dismiss was filed by the four mentioned defendants, the case was reassigned from the court’s Chief Judge James Bredar to Judge George Russell.
The plaintiffs are expected to reply to all responses in the coming weeks, and those responses can then be rebutted once again.
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