Legal

Sunday, November 24, 2013 – 10:00 a.m.

The drama surrounding the, now-closed, Upland-based law firm of Lackie, Dammeier, McGill and Ethir doesn’t seem to be abating in any way.

The Orange County District Attorney has targeted the firm in an investigation into its activities in the city of Costa Mesa.

The Legal Defense Fund (LDF), a Trust subsidiary of the Peace Officer’s Research Association of California (PORAC), the firms major revenue source, has made fraud allegations against the firm for overbilling. The Trust, by its own admission, in emails to its member law enforcement Associations, says it filed complaints with “appropriate” law enforcement authorities, and the State Bar of California.

LDF, according to firm Managing Partner Saku Ethir, asked the firm to compromise its representation of certain peace officer clients in order to cut costs.

Now a document appears to give some credence to the law firm’s assertion.

Lackie, Dammeier disseminated IRS Form 5500 – Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan for 2011, filed by LDF, to particpant Associations. The filing shows the trust lost $2.5 million in 2011. The report also shows the trust had a negative net worth of $11.1 million in the same period. In 2010, the trust had a negative net worth of $8.7 million.

In 2011, the trust reported a benefits payable liability of $19 million, and had premium revenue $16.9 million.

To read the full report, click here: 2011 PORAC – Form 5500

Now, according to sources, it looks like things are taking a serious dump on all fronts.

The Orange County investigation, because of major due process blunders, appears to be headed into the tank.

The PORAC situation is continuing to implode on multiple fronts, accordinng to new emails provided to InlandPolitics.com.

First, member Associations have been stonewalled on requests for information on just what evidence Trustee’s used to fire the law firm.

Second, some members Associations, including Riverside Police Officer’s Association and Torrance Police Officer’s Association, have terminated their coverage with LDF, and obtained coverage through the Fraternal Order of Police.

PORAC-LDF, essentailly cutoff the cash flow of Lackie, Dammeier, and made serious allegations that forced the firm, it’s largest service provider, out of business.

It’ll be interesting to see how this all plays out.