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Thread: Medifast Sues Detractors

  1. #1
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    Medifast Sues Detractors

    Medifast files lawsuit, Fraud Discovery Institute reopens investigation
    Posted by Tracy Coenen on February 19, 2010

    On Tuesday, Barry Minkow and the Fraud Discovery Institute issued a press release stating they were ending their investigation of Medifast Inc. (NYSE:MED) in order to focus on other companies.
    One day later, Medifast filed a defamation suit in California against Minkow, FDI, Robert Fitzpatrick, William Lobdell, iBusiness Reporting, me, my company Sequence Inc., and an anonymous message board poster. The suit seeks general damages of $270 million, plus other damages.

    The complaint filed by Medifast contains pages of self-praise, along with attacks on the character of those involved in the investigation of the company. In one example of the attacks, Medifast falsely refers to multi-level marketing expert Robert FitzPatrick as “… a self-claimed expert in pyramid schemes.” A brief look at FitzPatrick’s work clearly shows he’s not a “self-claimed” expert on pyramid schemes. In fact, regulators around the world have utilized his expertise. The Federal Trade Commission has received training from him. FitzPatrick has also testified in state and federal courts as an expert witness on pyramid schemes.
    Medifast files lawsuit, Fraud Discovery Institute reopens investigation : Sequence Inc. Fraud Files Blog

    Medifast lawsuit update
    Posted by Tracy Coenen on March 7, 2010

    A few weeks ago, Medifast Inc. (NYSE:MED) sued Barry Minkow, his Fraud Discovery Institute, me, my corporation, William Lobdell (a journalist working with Barry), Robert FitzPatrick (an expert witness on mutli-level marketing and pyramid schemes), and an anonymous message board poster (good luck with that).
    Medifast sued us for daring to say that their Take Shape For Life multi-level marketing division is a typical recruiting scheme and looks like a pyramid scheme. FitzPatrick has done years of research on MLMs, in large part using the numbers publicly released by companies to demonstrate how the vast majority of participants lose money. He wrote two formal reports on Medifast and their numbers – - he basically showed that the company’s financial gains in the last year or two have come almost solely from their multi-level marketing division. (The first report is here, and the second report is here.)
    How dare FitzPatrick say such a thing, especially when the numbers demonstrate exactly what he reported!!!
    Medifast lawsuit update : Sequence Inc. Fraud Files Blog

    Minkow Anti-SLAPP motion filed in Medifast case
    Posted by Tracy Coenen on May 7, 2010

    The Medifast Inc. litigation over its multi-level marketing division Take Shape For Life (TSFL), and the criticism of it by me, Barry Minkow, Fraud Discovery Institute, William Lobdell, Robert FitzPatrick, and an anonymous message board poster who referred to the company’s board chairman Bradley McDonald as “Pimp Daddy Brad” marches on.
    About a week ago, Robert FitzPatrick and I filed our anti-SLAPP motions with the court. This week Barry Minkow and Fraud Discovery Institute filed their anti-SLAPP motion with the court.
    Medifast seems to be getting nervous and desperate. Their lawyers have been shamelessly lying to the court, and are trying all sorts of neat tricks to stall the anti-SLAPP motions. They now claim that they need all sorts of discovery done before they can reply to the anti-SLAPP motions.

    If they’re so sure of their claims… and if we’ve told lies about them… and if they can prove it… why not proceed with the anti-SLAPP motions? Probably because the longer Medifast can drag this out and the more they cost the defendants in legal fees, the better their chances of shutting us up (and also shutting up any other citizen who dares to challenge the validity of the multi-level marketing business model)
    .
    Minkow Anti-SLAPP motion filed in Medifast case : Sequence Inc. Fraud Files Blog
    A half-truth is a whole lie.

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    Re: Medifast Sues Detractors

    Medifast is abusing the legal system to punish critics of Take Shape For Life
    Posted by Tracy Coenen on July 20, 2010


    Medifast has far more resources than any of the defendants, and the company was hoping that by suing us, we’d shut up about the company’s multi-level marketing division Take Shape For Life (TSFL).

    Because the lawsuit was filed in California, the defendants were immediately able to file anti-SLAPP motions. (SLAPP = Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) Under the California law which authorizes this, the burden immediately falls on Medifast to prove that it has a probability of winning its case against us.

    The whole point of the anti-SLAPP process is to stop big companies from abusing the legal system to get people to shut up. Big companies like Medifast sue people because they know the people can’t afford ongoing legal fees and will likely just stop talking about the company, even if the critics are right. The anti-SLAPP legislation is supposed to force Medifast to prove its case early on, saving the defendants legal fees if Medifast is filing a frivolous suit to harass and bankrupt the defendants.
    In this case, Medifast got a gift from the court. They are supposed to prove their case immediately. In this instance, they cannot prove their case, so they resorted to alternate tactics, and the judge is allowing it. Medifast has even been busy lying to the court, but hasn’t been held to account for this yet.

    Instead of proceeding with the case as the anti-SLAPP legislation requires, Medifast claimed it needed to do discovery.

    In my case, Medifast decided that producing the documents I had in my possession related to Medifast was not enough. They demanded a forensic analysis of my computer to try to recover deleted emails and documents that were deleted long before the lawsuit was filed. Nothing was deleted improperly, and Medifast knows this. Yet, they demanded this expensive and time-consuming process to be undertaken to place a great financial burden on me. They made silly demands that were aimed at increasing the cost and burden of this process, too.

    Yet Medifast is still delaying the process and trying to punish the defendants for daring to criticize the company. Medifast was given 90 days to conduct discovery, and now they want 30 more days. This is simply another delay tactic, designed to cost the defendants more time and more money.
    What has Medifast done in the last 90 days? They’ve done things like depose the ever-important Sam Antar. Yes, he is such a key to their case, that he’s not listed as a defendant. He’s merely a blogger who is friends with some of the defendants. He’s written about Medifast on his blog. And so Medifast has spent hours and hours harassing him.

    Wait! What about the defendants? Shouldn’t Medifast be worried about deposing them? Wasn’t that the whole point of this discovery process? I have heard not one peep about deposing me. Yep. Deposing Sam Antar is far more important. So important that now Medifast wants to extend discovery so that they can do depositions of the actual defendants.

    It’s easy to see what Medifast is doing. They’re delaying arguing the real issues because they will lose on the facts. And as a result, they’re also delaying having to provide any discovery themselves. They know what happens if they’re forced to turn over data and documents: it will be proven that the defendants told the truth. And we know that the longer Medifast goes without having to produce information themselves, the greater the chance that they are destroying and altering documentation.

    The games need to stop. This litigation needs to proceed under the anti-SLAPP legislation in California. Enough games. Enough burden on the defendants. Someone (the judge, maybe?) needs to make Medifast prove its case the way the law intended them to prove it.
    Medifast is abusing the legal system to punish critics of Take Shape For Life : Sequence Inc. Fraud Files Blog
    A half-truth is a whole lie.

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    Re: Medifast Sues Detractors

    UPDATE:

    Medifasts' abuse of the judicial process eventually came to naught as the anti SLAPP legislation worked perfectly:



    Tracey Coenen, Bill Lobdell, Barry Minkow, ibzreporting.com, and the Fraud Discovery Institute were all dismissed from the case.

    The full judgement in .pdf format can be downloaded HERE
    The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing

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    Re: Medifast Sues Detractors

    At the risk of defiling off topic rules, this is a judicial opinion that the bogmeister should have read and interpreted for him. ( After witnessing his meltdowns, I have serious doubts that he can read and comprehend legal concepts on his own without training wheels attached.)
    It seems like in this "industry" common sense is not all that common!

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    Re: Medifast Sues Detractors

    Quote Originally Posted by laidback View Post
    At the risk of defiling off topic rules, this is a judicial opinion that the bogmeister should have read and interpreted for him. ( After witnessing his meltdowns, I have serious doubts that he can read and comprehend legal concepts on his own without training wheels attached.)
    The Bogmeister still thinks anti SLAPP laws were designed to stop people hitting each other across the face.
    The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing

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    Re: Medifast Sues Detractors

    http://www.realscam.com/f11/rod-cook...-medifast-630/

    We had quite a lively discussion about just that in another thread.

    Here is the current docket. Looks like Medifast is being ordered to pay those tens of thousands in attorney fees! A lesson Boggy might want to take to heart!


    3:10-cv-00382-JLS-BGS Medifast, Inc. et al v. Minkow et al
    Janis L. Sammartino, presiding
    Bernard G. Skomal, referral
    Date filed: 02/17/2010
    Date of last filing: 12/09/2011

    History.pdf

    Soapboxmom

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