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G-Man's Boring Lawyer Blog
May 24th 2007, 05:31 CEST by Gabe

I'm kind of curious.
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#1 by Gabe
2007-05-24 05:31:53
http://www.dartpublishing.com
First?
#2 by Gabe
2007-05-24 05:31:59
http://www.dartpublishing.com
Yay!
#3 by BobJustBob
2007-05-24 06:02:42
Cheater!

"Games are not novels, and the ways in which they harbor novelistic aspirations are invariably the least interesting thing about them." - Steven Johnson
#4 by lwf
2007-05-24 06:22:43
sweet

5 reasons to hate minorities: Poor, Lazy, Smell bad, Wrong religion, and the rich ones take all the women. Wii.
#5 by McBain
2007-05-24 07:10:38
This thread sure died quick.

World of Warcraft is a pie eating contest where the reward is more pie.
#6 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 07:11:24
It's sleepy time for most posters.
#7 by Gabe
2007-05-24 07:11:28
http://www.dartpublishing.com
Late at night. Give it a chance!
#8 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 07:11:58
As it is I was up too late playing LotRO. I'll be paying for it in a little less than 5 hours.
#9 by Ds_
2007-05-24 08:32:21
roger.boal@gmail.com
Im still in work, sucks to be me.

Ps Gabe, Ireland still isnt a continent.
#10 by G-Man
2007-05-24 09:33:52
So one of the things I spend a fair amount of time doing and thus, have developed somewhat of an expertise in, is attaching or garnishing electronic fund transfers as prejudgment security for maritime claims (or fighting off such attachments). That this is even possible is a curious confluence of age-old salty seafaring traditions and the advent of modern global communications networks and highly sophisticated economic systems. In the olden days, if the owner of a ship wronged you somehow (i.e. stiffed you on your bill for supplies you provided, destroyed your cargo during transit, or injured a local) you would be pretty much shit out of luck in terms of recovering anything from them via an appeal to the traditional judicial system. By the time you could get a judgment from a court the ship would be long gone, off to some far flung port, and may never return.

So a special remedy was created for people who had maritime claims: they could arrest the vessel or otherwise attach property as security for a judgment they might eventually get, without having to obtain a judgment first. In fact, because speed was of the essence, all they had to do was show: (1) that they could at least claim a basis for a lawsuit (whether or not what they were claiming was actually supported by any facts), (2) that there was some attachable property that the court could lay its hands on, and (3) that the ordinary judicial process wouldn't work against the target of the attachment. And naturally, this showing is done ex parte, i.e. without the target of the attachment getting to tell their side of the story.

So far this all makes sense in the context of the age of sail, but flash forward 500 years and the logic starts to unravel. Nowadays of course, modern notions of jurisdiction permit US courts to get their filthy mitts over all manner of foreign defendants, so long as those foreigners have sufficient contacts with the US to render it "fair." And, in any case, even if a US court can't provide a forum for redress, the modern plaintiff isn't nearly as inconvenienced as he used to be in going after the foreign defendant on their own judicial home court. Dwindling rationales aside, the rule has persisted into the modern age, but because it was limited to maritime claims, and only permitted the attachment of property the court could lay its hands on (i.e. physical property or bank accounts located in the judicial district where the court sits) it hasd't really sparked much of a furor (especially considering that it was typically foreign defendants that felt the brunt, who are by definition less politically franchised than the average plaintiff).

However, two interesting recent developments have pushed this practice to the forefront of modern maritime litigation and have created an upheaval in the global maritime industry. First, while New York had long been one of the world's financial capitals, the recent deregulation of the banking industry has lead to the rise in mega-banks, such that eleven major banks located in Manhattan now control virtually all foreign market access to US dollar transactions. Thanks to these monster spawned of mergers of acquisitions (as well as the Federal Reserve in large part), any US dollar denominated EFTs (whether via CHIPS, ACH, Fedwire, wire transfers, etc.) are inevitably funnelled through and processed by one of these eleven banks. Second, the rise in asset forfeiture as a punitive device used by the Justice Department in the war on drugs has lead courts to increasingly push established boundaries on the definition of property and the scope of ownership. Over the last several decades Federal courts have increasingly granted the government the right to seize ever more ephemeral and intangible forms of property, culminating in the grant of the right to seize EFTs midstream (i.e. before they have reached their final destination - and this is the tricky bit - regardless of whether the target of the seizure is the originator or the beneficiary of the transfer).

Flush with the power of performing quantum mechanics on traditional property rights, it was only a short hop, skip and a jump for courts to permit prejudgment attachment of EFTs to maritime claimants. What this means is that anyone who says that they have a maritime claim can now secretly, without any advance notice, lay a trap which will automatically attach any US dollar transfers going to the benefit or, or emanating from, the target of the attachment, up to any amount claimed. Are you a Greek charterer who has been sued by a Norwegian vessel owner in the Peoples Republic of China for reneging on a contract in Hong Kong? Need some leverage to pressure a settlement? Why not make out a maritime claim in New York federal court for twenty million dollars, and then sit back and let the money roll in? It doesn't matter that the case has no connection to the US at all, because the property you want is in the US. Your claim is completely bogus? No big deal, the standard doesn't require much and the standard for wrongful attachment is ludicrously difficult to prevail on.

The use (and abuse) of maritime attachments is escalating rapidly as clients (and their underwriters) become increasingly familiar with the remedy. It is driving the banks nuts because they are being strongarmed by the courts and litigants into playing sheriff, having to jury rig filters into their already cumbersome (thanks to anti-terrorism regulations) EFT transaction systems so that they can automatically inspect and halt individual transfers on demand according to originator and beneficiary information. It is also arguably having a detrimental effect on the US dollar in favor of foreign currencies (particularly the euro) as foreign maritime companies become increasingly reluctant to transact business in US dollars due to the perils of attachment.

Next up: What happens when you capture $3.5 million of the Russian mafia's money.
#11 by gaggle
2007-05-24 10:44:11
That… was actually kinda interesting. And here I first thought this topic was the worst one yet.

"…a four-dimensional real vector space equipped with a nondegenerate, symmetric bilinear form."
#12 by Anonymous
2007-05-24 11:58:23
Fuck maritime claims, tell us about the mob money! How much of it have you spent already?

2005 TOTY 10000 badge winner and proud carrier.
#13 by Warren Marshall
2007-05-24 12:17:23
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
Scrollwheel'd

I Have A Cool Idea For A Game - Vertical Platformer
#14 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 12:25:57
Over the last several decades Federal courts have increasingly granted the government the right to seize ever more ephemeral and intangible forms of property, culminating in the grant of the right to seize EFTs midstream

Sounds like the Federal Government is too big and ornery and that voting 'them' out (whoever they may be) won't change a thing.
#15 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 12:26:13
WM is killing PC.
#16 by Mank
2007-05-24 12:46:54
Next up: What happens when you capture $3.5 million of the Russian mafia's money.


A lot of porn websites go out of bussiness?

#17 by Gunp01nt
2007-05-24 13:45:38
supersimon33@hotmail.com
Very interesting, not to mention comprehensive. Thanks, G-Man.

dethstryk: My friend bought some porno mags. He's single-handedly holding up the porn industry.
yotsuya: What's he doing with the other hand?
#18 by m0nty
2007-05-24 13:48:51
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
This is what democracy looks like.
#19 by Matt Perkins
2007-05-24 15:46:30
wizardque@yahoo.com http://whatwouldmattdo.com/
Yeah, liked it a lot, G-Man, keep it up. The under belly of the us/world legal system is infinitely interesting to me.

My intelligence, then, is not absolute but is a function of the society I live in

"I'm not sure it's possible to make a "subtle" jab at Matt's writing ability." - Ergo
#20 by Gabe
2007-05-24 15:49:57
http://www.dartpublishing.com
G-Man, I hope you're on the side of fighting the attachments. Unless they deserved it!

Nice post and actually pretty interesting.
#21 by BobJustBob
2007-05-24 17:41:12
<3 G-Man

"Games are not novels, and the ways in which they harbor novelistic aspirations are invariably the least interesting thing about them." - Steven Johnson
#22 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 17:51:59
Get a room! Again.
#23 by jjohnsen
2007-05-24 17:53:09
http://www.johnsenclan.com
Next up: What happens when you capture $3.5 million of the Russian mafia's money.

O.k.  The maritime stuff was alright, but this sounds much more interesting.

Actually, the liberalism of the media - as a general thing - IS a major fallacy. What the media is, is a whore.  -LP       Johnsen Family
#24 by m0nty
2007-05-24 18:36:00
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
G-Man's a lawyer, so he's on the side of whoever has the most money.
#25 by Shadarr
2007-05-24 18:59:13
shadarr@yahoo.com http://digital-luddite.com
That wasn't boring at all.  False advertising!

Even I know what crossing the Rubicon means, and I know fuck all about American history. -m0nty
#26 by Ashiran
2007-05-24 19:20:31
This blog is about law in a nation where I don't live.

So I guess it delivers!

Only the poor desire wealth.
#27 by Gunp01nt
2007-05-24 19:22:10
supersimon33@hotmail.com
#26 by Ashiran

This blog is about law in a nation where I don't live.

So I guess it delivers!


Didn't you get the memo from Rammstein?

dethstryk: My friend bought some porno mags. He's single-handedly holding up the porn industry.
yotsuya: What's he doing with the other hand?
#28 by Zeke
2007-05-24 20:25:36
dragonmasterslash@cox.net http://drgnmstrslash.livejournal.com
Yeah G-man, show them what's what!
#29 by McBain
2007-05-24 20:36:18
I also liked G-Man's lawyer blog.  More please.

World of Warcraft is a pie eating contest where the reward is more pie.
#30 by Dumdeedum
2007-05-24 21:58:50
http://www.dumdeedum.com
I only understood about two thirds of it, but it sounded edumacated and it talked about money and power which is always sexy so I approve.

Anyone else got interesting blog posts?

MP3 Of The Week: Lee Perry - Disco Devil.mp3 (?)
#31 by jjohnsen
2007-05-24 22:01:25
http://www.johnsenclan.com
How about this?  I had leftover chicken-asparagus stirfry that I made last night for lunch today.

Actually, the liberalism of the media - as a general thing - IS a major fallacy. What the media is, is a whore.  -LP       Johnsen Family
#32 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 22:02:44
I found a leak in the caulking of the shower stall upstairs that looks like it got into the floor and part of the floor may be rotted and will need to be fixed. A corner tile, below where the waste basket goes was looking a bit raised up and I pushed it down, cracked the grout/caulk with the wall and was able to stick my finger around underneath it.

FUN TIMES!
#33 by Chunkstyle
2007-05-24 22:07:02
I got free tickets to the Indy 500, and even found a reasonably priced hotel room.

Game Developers: Don't forget the zombie monkeys.
#34 by Shadarr
2007-05-24 22:12:04
shadarr@yahoo.com http://digital-luddite.com
Two weekends ago I went down to the park and took pictures of the herons nesting, except there was an eagle there so I took pictures of the eagle pissing off the herons.  Didn't get any good shots of it eating the baby herons, but a few of them turned out well.  We were wondering how the herons could survive, seeing as they don't actually protect their young at all.  When the eagle flew to a new nest, all the herons would squawk and take off.  While we were there (about 3 hours) the eagles probably killed a half-dozen babies.  But apparently this is a new thing, because there was a story in the paper about it and experts think this may be the end of that nesting ground.

It's kind of funny, because there are signs all over the area saying "no dogs" and "avoid making loud noises".  Meanwhile literally 20 feet away is a busy street with buses and semis driving by constantly.

Even I know what crossing the Rubicon means, and I know fuck all about American history. -m0nty
#35 by hangedmanAG
2007-05-24 22:18:45
www.livejournal.com/users/hangedman_ag/
Thats not really 'ha ha' funny

My crummy little life
#36 by schnee
2007-05-24 22:19:36
david@snowdesign.com
I found a leak in the caulking of the shower stall upstairs that looks like it got into the floor and part of the floor may be rotted and will need to be fixed.

Check for mold! That can be really nasty and infect the entire house, and once you have it you may never get rid of it.
#37 by G-Man
2007-05-24 22:24:51
This is kind of complicated and needs proper set up, so I'm going to split it into two parts

Our story begins with the arrest in October of 2003 of Russian billionaire Mikhail Khodorkovsky at a Siberian airport. Khodorkovsky had been the target of a ruthless campaign engineered by Vladimir Putin to topple Russia's largest non-state owned oil company, even as its owner was aligning ever more closely with the US.

Fearing the coming arrest and persecution, Khodorkovsky and a number of other Russian oligarchs pooled their resources together to create an astroturf campaign to smear Putin and his allies. They hired PR firms and lawyers and also created and funded a security company who was tasked with an unusual project. The company was to overhaul a massive luxury yacht so that it could be turned into a veritable floating fortress ala L. Ron Hubbard's Sea Org vessels. Crewed by ex-SWAT and SAS members and catering to every possible desire (including prostitutes' quarters), the yacht be a home away from home for Khodorkovsky and Company capable of resisting even government attempts to secure their arrests.

Unfortunately for Khodorkovsky, his arrest came before the plan could be put into action. However, the yacht had already been purchased (at a cost in excess of forty million dollars), by a wholly owned subsidiary of a Khodorkovsky company incorporated in Gibraltar. Khodorkovsky had been funnelling the assets of his oil empire into this Gibraltar company for some time prior to his arrest with the plan of handing the reins over to trusted advisors later to keep the money out of the hands of the Russian government.

The owner of the yacht contracted with a Cyprus based company to wholly refurbish it and to operate the vessel in every capacity (including provision of a crew, food, repairs, fuel, etc.) in exchange for several million dollars. The agreements were to continue in perpetuity with regular payments being made. But with Khodorkovsky and his buddies in Siberian prison or in exile there wasn't much point any longer in having a super yacht stocked with high class whores and machine gun toting thugs at the ready. So the subsidiary of the Gibraltar based company just up and stopped paying the Cyprus based company.

As an aside, it was also around this time that the British lawyer who headed up the venture arranging Khodorkovsky's smear campaign and the yacht died under mysterious circumstances in a helicopter accident. His replacement was the director of an Isle of Man based company.

I got brought in to secure the Cyprus company's breach of contract claim. The approach was three-fold: (1) arrest the yacht itself while it was in France and before a new agent could be found to operate the vessel; (2) commence arbitration of the dispute in London pursuant to the terms of the agreements; and (3) go for the gold by grabbing EFTs in the US to secure the claims.

Next time: Part Two
#38 by yotsuya
2007-05-24 22:26:55
When G-Man "mysteriously" stops posting, we'll know why.

I watched Aliens, and I didn't even get a lousy t-shirt.
#39 by m0nty
2007-05-24 22:32:06
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
I'm just waiting for the cellphone pics of naked Russian whores.
#40 by Warren Marshall
2007-05-24 22:38:18
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
I'm going to the beach in a week and a half, staying at a nice looking bed & breakfast instead of a shitty hotel on the water.  Should be fucking awesome.

I Have A Cool Idea For A Game - Vertical Platformer
#41 by yotsuya
2007-05-24 22:43:21
Warren-

Sounds good. I'm going to San Diego next week for some sun and Sea World.

I watched Aliens, and I didn't even get a lousy t-shirt.
#42 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 22:44:25
I'll be going on vacation too in about a week and a half. Looking forward to it.
#43 by yotsuya
2007-05-24 22:45:02
Where you going, A-Fritz?

I watched Aliens, and I didn't even get a lousy t-shirt.
#44 by hangedmanAG
2007-05-24 22:46:41
www.livejournal.com/users/hangedman_ag/
My girlfriend is trying to set up a trip for us on a cruise or to Hawaii.  I'm not enthused.

My crummy little life
#45 by yotsuya
2007-05-24 22:47:11
Why not?

I watched Aliens, and I didn't even get a lousy t-shirt.
#46 by Anonymous
2007-05-24 22:48:49
I'm just waiting for the cellphone pics of naked Russian whores.

You telling us this is like Joker announcing that he's about to beat his wang.

2005 TOTY 10000 badge winner and proud carrier.
#47 by CheesyPoof
2007-05-24 22:51:09
Paul, I'll be going on an african safari. To Tanzania to the Serengeti, Ngorongoro and Tarangire national parks. Should be good fun.
#48 by hangedmanAG
2007-05-24 22:53:30
www.livejournal.com/users/hangedman_ag/
Yot,

My girlfriend is about three or four income levels above mine and frankly it just seems like a lot (I mean the cost of spending a week in Hawaii will be about the same that I spent on 2 months is SE Asia!)  She is willing to pay for what I can't but it seems like a lot more emasculation that I really want.

My crummy little life
#49 by Anonymous
2007-05-24 22:53:39
#47 I'll use that as a hook to link this great video for you nature lovers.

2005 TOTY 10000 badge winner and proud carrier.
#50 by Matt Perkins
2007-05-24 22:54:01
wizardque@yahoo.com http://whatwouldmattdo.com/
Cheesy

You fucking rock. That's going to be an awesome vacation.



Myself, I'll be going on the Appalachian Trail mid June. Starting somewhere in NC, ending up somewhere in Tennessee I believe and basically having a generally good time assuming I get these damn pins out of my finger.

My intelligence, then, is not absolute but is a function of the society I live in

"I'm not sure it's possible to make a "subtle" jab at Matt's writing ability." - Ergo
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