Posted May 30, 2018, 4:12 pm CDT
A cable provider sued by the state of New York for allegedly overpromising internet speeds has notified the judge that it intends to claim the state of New York conspired with a law professor and technology companies to bring the lawsuit.
A Latham & Watkins lawyer representing Charter Communications, Christopher Clark, told the New York judge overseeing the case in a May 22 letter that Charter plans to present an unclean hands defense. The Hollywood Reporter has a story.
Charter will allege that Columbia law professor Tim Wu worked with officials from private companies, including Google, to help New York’s attorney general investigate and sue. According to the letter, New York “delegated what should have been an objective law enforcement investigation to third parties whose pecuniary and political interests are adverse” to those of Charter Communications.
The letter refers to an email sent to a colleague by a Google official that said she had spoken with Wu about the New York lawsuit. “This is all really confidential, obvs, but you’re in the cabal,” the email said.
Charter is seeking a search of Wu’s personal emails related to the litigation and to unredacted witness interview notes about meetings of “cabal” members. “The importance of these notes has only increased as Charter has learned of the literal, self-described ‘cabal’ Mr. Wu formed” with individuals from Google, another company and a think tank, according to the letter.
The New York Attorney General’s office responded in a May 29 letter that it has already produced or logged hundreds of relevant emails from Wu, and it has fulfilled its discovery obligations. It also provided interview notes for the court’s review.
“OAG vehemently disputes Charter’s innuendo that the witness interviews could bear on an imagined conspiracy involving Professor Wu,” the Attorney General’s office said in its letter.
A spokesperson for the New York Attorney General’s office told the Hollywood Reporter the claims by Charter officials are a “cute but desperate ploy to distract people from their yearslong fraud and deception.”
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