Defamation suit brought against Exxon Mobil and defense attorneys over document presented at trial

By Tia Benton | Apr 23, 2013

Lauren A. Welch

NEW ORLEANS – Attorneys and law firms that represented several plaintiffs at trial in an occupational hazards case have filed a new action seeking damages from Exxon Mobil and its attorneys over defamation allegations.

Frank M. Buck Jr., Timothy J. Falcon, Jeremiah A. Sprague, The Buck Law Firm and The Falcon Law Firm filed a lawsuit against Exxon Mobil Corporation, Liskow & Lewis and James A. Brown in the Orleans Parish Central District Court in February.

The plaintiffs originally sued the defendant for allegedly exposing their clients to oilfield generated radioactive waste.

In the new suit, the plaintiffs claim the defendants accused them of violating legal and ethical duties by improperly attempting to introduce a document it knew to be privileged.

The suit claims Exxon tried to exclude a memo that allegedly showed that the company had been aware of radioactivity in its production equipment for well over 20 years.

According to the suit, Orleans Parish Civil District Court Judge Ethel S. Julien ruled the memo was not privileged and could be submitted as evidence in court. The defendant's attorneys allegedly knew the document was not considered privileged, but still spread accusations of legal and ethical violations about the plaintiffs in the media through Courthouse New Service, the suit claims.

An unspecified amount is sought for damages sustained by plaintiffs including damages to their personal and professional reputation in the community, emotional distress, embarrassment and humiliation.

The plaintiffs are represented by Lauren A. Welch of New Orleans-based McCranie, Sistrunk, Anzelmo, Hardy, McDaniel & Welch LLC.

This case has been assigned to Division A Judge Tiffany G. Chase.

Case no. 2013-01267.

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