Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Gwartz v. Weilert (Cal. Ct. App. - Nov. 18, 2014)

Today's published opinion from Justice Franson begins by saying:  "This appeal follows a highly publicized jury trial of a fraud claim arising from a $2.3 million sale of 15 acres of land that included a residence, riding arena and associated buildings, located on South Kings Canyon Road, Parlier, California. The plaintiffs who purchased the property obtained a judgment for $1,553,800, which included $850,000 in punitive damages."

Hmmm.  I had never heard of that "highly publicized" trial before.  Maybe I just forgot about it.  So I read the rest of the opinion to see if that would help.

Nope.  Still never heard about it.

I'm sure that's just my Southern California, big(gish) city bias.  I'm sure it was a huge story in the city of Parlier.  Population 14,494.  Five miles southeast of Selma, California.

I wish also there were more details.  Because I'm sure Justice Franson's right that it's a fascinating case.

As it is, the opinion merely deals with the appellate disentitlement doctrine.  Which is itself a neat thing.  The Court of Appeal dismisses defendant/appellant's appeal because they engaged in various machinations to try to avoid, circumvent, and hide from the judgment.

To tell the truth, I've seen worse.  Lots worse.

Not that that's a defense.  But if you ever want a case for the proposition that defendants can't try to hide from a judgment and simultaneously appeal it, here's a good one.