Anti-SLAPP and First Amendment

California’s Anti-SLAPP statute protects individuals and business who have been unfairly targeted with an expensive lawsuit by a plaintiff seeking to chill the right to free speech and to petition the government for redress. For example, individuals who write a letter to a newspaper editor, complain at a public meeting or report unlawful activity are frequently targeted with lawsuits for defamation and other common torts. California’s Anti-SLAPP law is designed to end such lawsuits quickly and award attorney’s fees to the prevailing defendant. The firm has experience representing filing Anti-SLAPP motions on behalf of unfairly targeted clients at both the trial and appellate levels. The key to a successful Anti-SLAPP motion is to hire an attorney quickly so that an adequate motion can be filed on time.

Summary of Significant Anti-SLAPP Work

Vogele v. Williams (Orange County Superior Court, Case No. 30-2012-00558522). Mr. Lewis represented two plaintiffs in a malicious prosecution action. Over the course of five years, Mr. Lewis defeated three anti-SLAPP motions and three summary judgment motions and the matter proceeded to trial. Following a one-month jury trial, Mr. Lewis obtained a unanimous jury verdict on liability and an award of punitive damages.

Gallo v. Takano (Los Angeles Superior Court, Case No. BC618932). In this high profile First Amendment case, Mr. Lewis represented a journalist sued by celebrity Vincent Gallo over claims of violation of right to privacy and illegal recordings. Mr. Lewis filed an anti-SLAPP motion, obtained a complete dismissal of the action and an award of attorney’s fees for his client. In awarding fees, Judge William Fahey concluded that Mr. Lewis was an expert in anti-SLAPP law.

Client Name Confidential. 2017. Yelp reviewer posted negative review about attorney. Attorney sued for defamation. Following filing of an anti-SLAPP motion on behalf of the Yelp reviewer, the lawsuit settled for payment of Yelp reviewer’s attorney’s fees.

Client Name Confidential. 2017. Yelp reviewer posted negative review about attorney. Attorney sued for defamation. Following one phone call by Jeff Lewis, the lawsuit was dismissed.

Hotdoggers, Inc. v. Mueller (Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. BC562760, 2014).  Mr. Lewis represented a defendant sued for malicious prosecution in connection with proceedings before the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.  Mr. Lewis filed an anti-SLAPP motion resulting in the case being dismissed and the client receiving an award of attorney’s fees and costs.

Copenbarger v. Johnson (Riverside Superior Court Case No. RIC 1313995 2014).  Jeff Lewis represented a defendant sued for malicious prosecution.  Mr. Lewis filed an anti-SLAPP motion resulting in the case being dismissed and the client receiving an award of attorney’s fees and costs.

Peregrine Pharmaceuticals v DOES, (April 9, 2013, California Court of Appeal Case No. D059655. Mr. Lewis represented client alleged to have posted negative information on website. Mr. Lewis handled the appeal of the denial of the anti-SLAPP motion.

Rothman v. Masson (March 5, 2012 G044872). Represented client on appeal from order granting anti-SLAPP motion. Client prevailed on appeal.

Lintz v Amberhill, Orange County Superior Court Case No. 30-2011 00509392. Mr. Lewis brought a successful anti-SLAPP motion and recovered attorney’s fees for his client.

Christakes v. Ekstrom (2007, Orange County Superior Court Case No. 07CC03933). Mr. Lewis filed successful anti-SLAPP motion in 2007 of a malicious prosecution action followed by a successful appeal from the fee order in 2008.