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Drummond v Collingsworth Order

Author: R. David Proctor, Judge for United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama Southern Division, Published on: 7 December 2015

In the face of what is now indisputable evidence, it is clear, and Collingsworth admits, that he made “security” payments to  multiple (at least six) witnesses in South America as part of his prosecution of lawsuits against Drummond Coal Company…Collingsworth only disclosed three such payments to the court and Drummond.  In fact, on multiple occasions he has given sworn testimony that there were only three witnesses paid…The court finds that the crime-fraud exception applies here, and that it operates to pierce the work product and attorney client privileges to the extent explained in this opinion, thus allowing Drummond…to furrow deeper into the hole of matters otherwise covered by the veil of privacy.  Moreover, because the crime-fraud exception applies here, Drummond is entitled to a second round of discovery…In accordance with the findings of this Memorandum Opinion: (1) the remaining portions of the Report and Recommendation of Special Master Regarding Certain Issues Relating to the Court’s Hearing on Plaintiff’s Motion for Sanctions…are ADOPTED and  APPROVED, to be implemented consistent with this Opinion; and (2) Drummond Company, Inc.’s Motions to Compel Answers to Deposition Questions…are GRANTED, to be implemented consistent with this Opinion…

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Related companies: Drummond