Joined: Jun 2002
Tuesday May 27, 2008 4:33 AM
By David DePaolo
On Friday, May 23, 2008, we ran a top story detailing the public release of a search warrant by the Los Angeles Superior Court concerning Premier Medical and related entities/persons. The warrant had issued in September of last year, but was just unsealed this month. A follow-up story was published today, Tuesday, May 27.
Our stories on the release of the search warrant named several people identified in the warrant as "suspect attorneys" (the actual phrase used in the warrant), and other names found on a phone log by the investigator and affiant on the warrant.
I anticipated this would cause an uproar in the very close-knit professional circle that is the Southern California workers' compensation community.
Were there errors in the story? Yes, some folks that were mentioned in the warrant were incorrectly characterized in the story, and a correction issued.
Otherwise the story accurately portrayed accusations made in a sworn affidavit supporting a broadly worded search warrant. Names were detailed. Allegations were conveyed.
Some of our critics have colored the piece as "smear."
I frankly view it as public service.
How many of these good folks knew that they were suspect, or even on a warrant where their premises, possessions and personal effects may be searched?
If they knew, then there is nothing wrong with identifying them.
If they didn't know, then now they do, and they can take whatever action is necessary to protect themselves, their property, their clients and their reputations.
A couple of those mentioned in the story contacted us to provide further explanation and their side of the story. Every single attorney named in the warrant was called either Thursday or Friday. Only five either took calls or returned calls. The rest either don't care, are too busy to care, or are not surprised.
I stand by our piece, and follow up articles.
David DePaolo is editor-in-chief and chief executive officer of WorkCompCentral.
President, Editor in Chief