WWL>Topics>>1-8-13 12:35pm Garland: on BP's attacks on oil spill victims

1-8-13 12:35pm Garland: on BP's attacks on oil spill victims

Jan 8, 2014|

Garland talks with attorney Walter Leger about BP's attacks in the media on claimants from the oil spill.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Followed. The BP issue with the macondo oil gold and that prior engine itself. That is -- courts and and today I got a little bored by an -- -- reduce chose after a decision as a rendered but lately of BP he has come about these hopeful -- at all over the country here recently -- Of what's going on -- new legal settlement clean facility. What they point out the incident that -- be good news that it's on the colts that holds a settlement program. Appeals coordinator result Clinton's counsel legal advisor permitted planes counsel legal advisor terminated. And listed the settlement program CEO and CEO recently resigned -- reports -- they've been entertaining which subordinates. At a New Orleans. Which triple. Since Republicans Scopes of -- awarded more than 500 to 2000 dollars during the period there were frequent and we just had. Loyola law professor and that includes buried stroll meet in his element that. There would be complete I don't think he believes that the princes has distorted. But I wanted to get my good -- troubled Walter Tuesday. Local attorneys. How to and there are usually don't hear founding could -- 3450. Miles one -- keep them. I don't -- girl in -- and well I heard you talking with professor before that you were disappointed that he agreed with you when you're never disagree with it. And I would be disappointed but did agree with that. It appears you that I could be agree you know what position no but we -- -- on some points of this would have -- is right. What do what do you think what reported what is going on here at and -- let me preface it with. Not you but -- -- -- friend of mine over the years they've emphasized. In neat thing to. -- -- What -- in the court system. You don't see anything you don't go public in particular. Because they can pull out little sections -- bill and emboldened mutilated. That's the cardinal -- Do not in the impact. Our brand eighty a crisis communication company. Where will it represented a huge corporations all over the world in how would one of the key elements of corporate training. -- you have that you wrote statement to make and you don't think anything more you got to control the statement. You think this is a little than usual. Well in litigation the advice that -- -- hearing about that lawyers get to their clients it is not to say anything because. Do literally anything they say that the clients as can be used against them. And their limited opportunities. In side of litigation where the other side gets to question you or after about what transpired. And good lawyers on the opposite side won't use anything that should. You know most people are not professional communicators. Or not overly guarded in the manner in which they safely exit. Good lawyers and you know and even -- -- can use things that people say against. So you try to limit. The statements that the individual you will make because. Those those admissions sorts things and that stated can be used against him later. And -- their interest or the interest of the company that will which are talking about it and to some degree it is is very un usual. Two to the extent that every. Every company or every party that causes damage to others in this case BP. As a result of this explosion. Was found to be responsible and in fact criminally responsible and pled guilty to manslaughter for the deaths of eleven man. BP is currently litigating its level of response to legal responsibility. Both civilly. And and and in terms of potential finds under federal Clean Water Act and others. For this responsibility in this litigating those rulings and court. And so they're dressing room in those ways and it's not unusual for that that type of part of that involvement in in causing this type of disaster. To try to put a good spin on their public image and try to rebuild whatever public image that they had. What is on usual here and of course they did very aggressively talked about. You know trying to address the spill and trying to save animals and save the coast and save your lives and save the environment and an end to some degree were very aggressive. Now they suggested that the reason they did was -- of the goodness -- their hearts I would like to think that part of it but also more required. Than do many things. And for them to try to rebuild their images would you would expect if there's you know as public relations guy for public relations guy. How would be expect to what is on -- usual though is they enter into this global settlement that they were very proud of that they. Spent months and months and months. With some of the finest and most highly paid lawyers in the country negotiating in -- into the settlement. They then that they put together reams of affidavits of experts including accountants and in all types of analyst. -- fiscal and legal analyst talked about how fair and reasonable Solomon is that this was just the -- wonderful fine. Two people the Gulf Coast have been damaged in then they attacked adverse. And they -- -- to some degree in the courtroom but -- -- and at least to that extent those who defend the -- can address and in which one. But that what you're talking about is the attacks in the news media. Before payers -- and full page ads in the New York Times in the Washington. Who -- -- world actually the Wall Street Journal -- just. Does appear to be somewhat unprecedented. Because there -- attacks are not so much on. The legal substance which is what we lawyers deal with the legal -- options of the settlement but -- on the integrity. Of those Abbas in the Gulf Coast or damaged. By what they did. And that's what's so offensive you know for the attack on. A rational -- A national renowned not naming him but obviously. Identify him and of course general aghast importance that must -- me. And by the way I did follicle -- my claim was filed pursuant to every wall for warmth of the shuttle program about the way BP and their national ahead. They -- that I got paid money. But they didn't say is I didn't get paid and I was awarded pursuant to the shuttle program. I -- it in the appeal process they. A formidable and get any money and then there they're attacking I -- his reputation. -- -- come back you're more in the interest -- shall we did invite BP. To -- spokesman I've been studio on the phone the four we have no interest on the. We're thinking about the lawsuit against BP you know we're in federal court urged -- court. And ensure -- -- formulate the scores from -- Walter Lucia with news attorney would call often. When we talk about anything legal. -- soup like. Okay. Here's a big company that signed an agreement. -- expletives that says we've gotten agreement on by yeah. It's legal agree. -- Didn't they -- taken out full page. Saying this that he million people in the ripping off. Didn't. They say you among themselves weakens and the -- of the group were the Circuit Court -- Which is conservative. Which the -- -- back to bore you and says hey dude you got a good group. Disregarding. -- the legal agreement. And they continue to take the big -- Who went crying to me and I -- -- -- singled drugs. Could be influenced. By New York. Well we lawyers like to think that they cannot be and and and and aren't. And -- I would like to think in this case that will body cannot be. The judges come to the like plagiarism like lawyers like private citizens from the table with their -- backgrounds and beliefs and that means otherwise. And -- is that part of BP's strategy who knows. It is it is an odd strategy and and for example with which you talked about in terms of signing an agreement. Because this was -- the creation of class actions. Not only did it in an ordinary -- on agreement a done deal. In terms of class action -- particularly case this back to that so many people involved there's a -- for fairness. And at that fairness here there was testimony presented underwrote. -- -- -- By the parties by both for the proponents of the settlement. And that scares the proponents of the settlement were claimants pulled -- punitive and proposed class representatives and the -- steering committee which would be class counsel. If people represented the businesses. You end by BP. And BP and counsel present and experts and others under oath sworn in a row so this is fair and reasonable. And we negotiated as we talked about earlier you extensible. Now with some of the brightest minds in the country and here's the deal now what is not put. I I guess in all fairness BP has every right to now look back -- -- And the way the settlements being interpreted is not the way we expected. Except that -- the professor at least a little bit earlier and other ships that wall. Except that they test by Monroe always been interpreted. Is the way they knew it was going to be at -- But box but what so under our system they're entitled to come to court -- -- will we change -- mark we think. It's different we have a different view of surprise and it legally -- view can go back literally you -- doesn't mean you should win. It doesn't mean you should win but you have you have rights you know use the question -- you know people often ask that question somebody for -- you can sue somebody for -- But you know he is hitting good losses there's a one that is not frivolous that's the fundamental question. Are or are there is what they don't fruitless from the Afro that's equipment management. They have the right to go to court they have a right to -- -- -- -- -- -- to some -- the Court of Appeals whether you call it conservative or liberal or moderate or whatever. We in split decisions -- made which so we want to review this. And judge bar BA has modified some of the matters in which on the interpretation steak place but your question the deeper question. The US is one of the attacking in the news. And I -- that as a citizen who's an actress award but as a businessperson. Personal lives down to -- wire all we've been attacked wires are integrity mean attack because we. Because Louisiana businesses -- Seafood processors -- sure why and hit and Mississippi and Alabama and everybody these business people. Businesspeople. Have in good faith file claims pursuant to the interpretation of the agreement that. They understood the judge understood never want try to do rightly understood and now they're being their integrity is to act that's the strange thing. And that's an -- and if it and that's that are offensive if it's for their shareholders. If functioned correctly big daughter was in and of being separate doing other things can be eight bill we've been told we've been. Three point eight billion so far. Right in the middle of that before they know the the numbers what they agreed to charge. That has the capability of charging them per barrel. A much bigger prize if he makes a decision they don't like. Well 22 things first that the that there analysis that this would cost seven point eight billion the settlement -- has no -- You know the settlement of those who is the unions are being whatever it is the payouts or whatever that the damages and a totally being paid out. There estimation seven point eight billion was did for regulatory purposes much room. The FCC in the United States a similar regulatory agency in Great Britain where where -- -- the corporate headquarters are. And for their shareholders we all a lot of us thought we read that at the early stages that sounded like a very lowest. Of course they have all the relief Smart people bright people made the estimates that the thought that that was a good. It turns out they're now reconsidering their conclusion Oak Creek. There that. -- -- -- you -- might -- each group well they may -- have an interest in discussions in the boardrooms. I haven't been invited. But -- don't expect. But in the the other question those. Why do you attack on the judge in the -- -- in the summer program that and that that your question and Willis when they know the bush judge. Will be making a determination of damages. Yeah that is to be taken off for the kids while I guess there's always a chance to judge to be removed from the case mop my guess is this junction. Tell you most judges almost every judgement or fair and impartial. And while they may be you know instantly you know offended by an action that he lawyer takes -- party takes. Their job is to get impartial and to make the right rule. My guess is bush George will be -- room. Cut that out and and parcel that out and -- rulings on the personals now they're trying to shut them up. Later percentage prejudiced because we attacked him that would be initiative that. Can they be that Machiavellian. Yeah a much adjusting that I'm just -- that rhetorically. But but my guess is this George will do the right there's plenty of evidence for him to do the right. One point question. For the sizzle world the true owners who play caller we've come. With the Paris. You meet your candidacy in an open. I try to load balancing the interest of course I'm not gotten our. Well. How old Maltese and no word -- you think you're very intelligent bird -- what to do. And you're coming back this year. But that's why I default and no but Helen hasn't as a way -- persuading that you're you're due out as the best in the business. And shoes persuasive. All through jail as always pleasure and show coming right back I double --