Freeman Freeman & Smiley Attorneys Michael Blumenfeld and Robert J. Girard II Win $3.7M Award

FINRA Imposes $2.5 Million in Punitive Damages and Orders Expungement of Records

LOS ANGELES--()--Michael Blumenfeld, Chair of Litigation Department, and Robert J. Girard II, Partner of Freeman Freeman & Smiley, celebrated a win with their clients, Mr. Corey Casilio and Mr. William Leitch, who suffered from false and damaging accusations from their former employer, John Valentine of Valentine Capital Asset Management, upon leaving voluntarily to start their own firm. FINRA found in favor of the former employees and awarded $3.7M, which included $2.5M in punitive damages. “Michael and Robert did a great job in defending our clients’ professional reputation,” said Steven L. Ziven, Managing Partner for Freeman Freeman & Smiley.

“This was a ‘must win’ case for our clients. Their careers depended upon a victory and the expungement of the specious customer complaints and FINRA filings that were erroneously charged to them by their former employer,” said Michael Blumenfeld. “Under the facts of this case, the $2.5 million punitive damage Award was wholly appropriate.” In a case involving the damaging of our clients’ names, we charged that Mr. Valentine instigated, as well as assisted claimants and customers to draft complaint letters against our clients to contaminate their BrokerCheck records. It is noteworthy to include that Mr. Leitch and Mr. Casilio did not have any direct contact with the customers that wrote complaint letters, nor did they handle their accounts. “We are certainly pleased with the decision, which we believe correctly reflects the overwhelming evidence presented by our clients with regard to outrageous misconduct by their former employer,” said Robert J. Girard II.

To read the full decision please click here.

About Freeman Freeman & Smiley, LLP

Since its inception in 1976, Freeman Freeman & Smiley, LLP has developed a nationally recognized law practice specializing in the areas of Commercial and Securities Litigation, Business Transactions and Tax Planning, Securities Regulation, Real Estate Transactions, Bankruptcy, Employment, Estate Planning, International Practice, Charitable and Non-Profit Organization Planning. Freeman Freeman & Smiley, LLP is a full-service law firm whose goal is to deliver results while remaining committed to the best practices and resources at reasonable rates. The firm is an efficient organization exemplifying excellence in service, value and results - providing big firm expertise with the accessibility and personal service of a small firm. For more information, visit ffslaw.com.

Contacts

Freeman Freeman & Smiley, LLP
Oscar Ayala, 310-255-6111
Oscar.Ayala@ffslaw.com

Release Summary

Freeman Freeman & Smiley Attorneys Michael Blumenfeld and Robert J. Girard II Win $3.7 Million Award. FINRA Imposes $2.5 Million in Punitive Damages and Orders Expungement of Records.

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Contacts

Freeman Freeman & Smiley, LLP
Oscar Ayala, 310-255-6111
Oscar.Ayala@ffslaw.com