Previously I blogged about Thomas Mundy, a serial litigant who uses the utterly broken mechanism of disabilities law to shake down businesses for cash. Mr. Mundy recently lost a case against a local Del Taco franchise. Today, the franchise's lawyers issued a press release with a few interesting details, including the fact that the jury only deliberated for 18 minutes before finding unanimously against Mr. Mundy, and that today the trial judge ordered Mr. Mundy to pay over five thousand dollars in costs to the franchise. The judge was not a fan of Mr. Mundy: in the attached order he characterizes Mundy as a "professional plaintiff looking to make a quick buck rather than see purported barriers to access removed," and notes that Mundy's testimony was not credible in several respects. (Mundy claimed at trial that the reason he went to Del Taco with a camera was not to gather evidence for a lawsuit, but because he had been taking pictures at the beach; the court found this was not credible.) However, the judge found — almost certainly correctly — that he lacked authority to award attorney fees to Del Taco, and that the injustice of the situation would have to be addressed by the Legislature — or, perhaps, by a vexatious litigant proceeding in some future case.
So Mundy pays over five grand as a penalty for a failed shakedown. That's just the cost of doing business for him — he reportedly makes more than $300,000 per year. In a more just system, he would be liquidating his assets to pay Del Taco's attorney fees.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
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