On December 27th we published a blog post describing the Illinois Qui Tam lawsuits. In the interim many of our clients and friends, both on the winery and the retailer tier, have been sued by Mr.Diamond. Many of our clients have reluctantly settled their cases in order to avoid the cost of trying the cases against Mr. Diamond. We have referred our clients to the very fine team of litigators at Jones Day in Chicago for defense. Now Jones Day reports the first major defense break in the cases - the intention to dismiss the cases against the retailer defendants because the retailers have no nexus with the state that would establish a right to sue them in state court. This is significant. It does not, at first blush, help the winery defendants but it is a sign that the authorities in Illinois are taking a dim view of Mr. Diamond's activities. That is a good thing.
Please stay tuned to Booze Rules (and the Jones Day blogs) for more information, and call or email us with questions.