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Old 02-16-2011, 05:57 AM   #1
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Default Rejected Dealer Lawsuit Being Filed Tomorrow Against U.S. Treasury

To All :

Thanks to each of you who have have helped assemble rejected Chrysler dealers to join my lawsuit against the U.S. Treasury for the unconstitutional conduct of the Presdients Auto Task Force. Barofsky's resignation should not hinder further investigations and I intend to use the full scope of our dicovery rights in the Court of Federal Claims to uncover the evidence of Government intrusion into private enterprise and the "Taking" of private property without compensation by the Government. It has become increasingly clear that the Task Force directed that Chrysler file Bankruptcy and cut dealers in the process.

We have 66 dealers on board and the number grows daily. The nation's pre-eminent "Government Takings" lawyers, Roger and Nancy Marzulla of Washington DC, have joined my litigation team. They have co-authored the authoritive book on the subject of Government Taking of Private Property. They are very enthusiastic about the merits of our case.

As many of you know, I started out as a car jockey in the 1970's at my father's Buick dealership on Long Island. He urged me to attend law school rather than take over the business as he spoke of his frustration over dealing with the factory and the Government as well as the absence of lawyers with auto dealership knowledge. Fast forward 40 years. I wonder if he ever envisioned a fight of this magnitude to vindicate so many dealers victimized by this travesty against the most powerful adversary in the world. Right will prevail over Might.

Wish me luck !

Regards, Len Bellavia
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Old 02-16-2011, 06:31 AM   #2
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I am so excited about this opportunity to be vindicated. If anyone is on the fence here send a reply or PM me.
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Old 02-16-2011, 02:23 PM   #3
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Len,

That's great news - thanks for sharing it with our members first.

I'm also happy to hear that the resignation of Mr. Barofsky does not impact your ability to move forward.

In my opinion there's no question the rejected dealers were targeted for termination so the White House could sell the auto bailouts to the tax payers as a "shared sacrifice." It was all political gamesmanship.

I look forward to hearing more updates as the case proceeds.
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Old 02-17-2011, 07:06 AM   #4
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Yes, thanks for the update. I'm still following this, albeit from afar.

My question is: from a legal perspective, given that the gov't took large ownership stakes in each of the 'new' entities (whether in cash or equity) how does 'eminent domain' not have some factor?

Doesn't eminent domain constitutionally require remuneration for assets seized by the gov't?

This was never mentioned in any of the congressional inquiries that I watched, or in the any of the BK court proceedings that I attended. It bugged the hell out of me.
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Old 02-17-2011, 08:35 AM   #5
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Take it all the way, Len.
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Old 02-19-2011, 12:41 PM   #6
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Default Most read and commented story on the Automotive News website

As I mentioned in a different thread, the article regarding the lawsuit filed on behalf of the Rejected Dealers was the most read and commented story on the Automotive News website. It was also reported by almost every major news source.

Here's the post Len made on the Automotive News website regarding the article and some of the comments:


Quote:
There are many good posts here. There are also many that miss the point, particularly the ones that ask how can these dealers sue given the fact that without the bailout Chrylser would not have survived -- or the ones that compare rejected dealers to displaced workers. The legal issues in this case are much simpler than many of these posts suggest. How do I know ? I am the attorney who filed the lawsuit for the 64 dealers (now many more).
Quote:
.
The 5th Amendment states that when the Government takes private property for public use it must pay fair value to the owner. But you may say, the Government didn't take the dealerships away, Chrysler did. Therein lies my whole case. All of the other issues are irrelevant. It is our claim that the Task Force (U.S. Treasury) conditioned the issuance of the TARP bailout money on a Chrysler bankruptcy filing along with accelerated dealer cuts. I can't disclose the proof here. Many of you know it already. What was the public use ? The Administration felt (rightly or wrongly --doesnt matter) that dealers cuts would save money and demanded this draconian measure to prevent the national economic devastation a post Bk Chrysler failure would create. In other words, dealerships were "taken" for the public good. The AutoNews story contains commentary that our case is "high risk, low percenatge" and a "stretch". Maybe that is a normal reaction as most lay people associate eminent domain or "taking" in the context of a highway widening project. True, real property is more commonly the subject of condemnation. But the courts have held property rights to include contracts, such as franchise agreements. This case has been reviewed by some of the best constitutional lawyers in the country. I brought in as my co-counsel the leading "takings" lawyers in the nation. Is this a slam dunk case ? Absolutely not -- because there has never been a case factually identical decided by the courts. But the principals of law are tried and true and find their genesis in the United States Constitution. I hope this helps crystalize the issues. I take my hat off to my clients. Wish us well.

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Old 04-13-2011, 02:46 PM   #7
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Has there been any response filed from the Government yet?
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:00 AM   #8
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Default Rejected Dealer Lawsuit

Quote:
Originally Posted by DealerLaw.com View Post
To All :

Thanks to each of you who have have helped assemble rejected Chrysler dealers to join my lawsuit against the U.S. Treasury for the unconstitutional conduct of the Presdients Auto Task Force.

Wish me luck !

Regards, Len Bellavia
GOOD LUCK!

What is the caption and case number?
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:17 AM   #9
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>>>>>>It is our claim that the Task Force (U.S. Treasury) conditioned the issuance of the TARP bailout money on a Chrysler bankruptcy filing along with accelerated dealer cuts. I can't disclose the proof here. Many of you know it already<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

It will be very interesting to learn the strength of the proof which shows that the Task Force conditioned the issuance of TARP bailout money on a Chrysler bankruptcy / accelerated dealer cuts. Whatever the result - discovery will surely shed light on a blatantly opaque process.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 57years View Post
Has there been any response filed from the Government yet?
Great question.

I'll send an email to Mr. Bellavia and ask if he can provide any updates.
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Old 03-07-2017, 06:37 PM   #11
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Litigation Update: After 6 years of the Government appealing adverse rulings we start depositions on Monday. I am traveling to Atlanta to take the deposition of Robert Nardelli. I am entitled to 7 hours of questioning.
Next up will be Peter Grady on Match 30th in Detroit and then Jim Press in California.
We have found very helpful documents in discovery to establish that the Auto Task Force insisted upon the terminations. Case moving slowly but it gets stronger every day. Regards, Len Bellavia
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Old 03-08-2017, 05:33 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DealerLaw.com View Post
Litigation Update: After 6 years of the Government appealing adverse rulings we start depositions on Monday. I am traveling to Atlanta to take the deposition of Robert Nardelli. I am entitled to 7 hours of questioning.
Next up will be Peter Grady on Match 30th in Detroit and then Jim Press in California.
We have found very helpful documents in discovery to establish that the Auto Task Force insisted upon the terminations. Case moving slowly but it gets stronger every day. Regards, Len Bellavia
Thanks Len!

Boy what I'd give to be a fly on the wall.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:58 AM   #13
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Great news for the plaintiffs. Len, Have a safe trip!
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:44 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DealerLaw.com View Post
Litigation Update: After 6 years of the Government appealing adverse rulings we start depositions on Monday. I am traveling to Atlanta to take the deposition of Robert Nardelli. I am entitled to 7 hours of questioning.
Next up will be Peter Grady on Match 30th in Detroit and then Jim Press in California.
We have found very helpful documents in discovery to establish that the Auto Task Force insisted upon the terminations. Case moving slowly but it gets stronger every day. Regards, Len Bellavia
Can you let us in on anything about your conversation with Mr. Nardelli? I hope it went well and he sweated through the whole thing.
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Old 03-16-2017, 09:18 AM   #15
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the head's of all the bc's had lists of the dealers they wanted to purge. our Chrysler financial rep told me he saw the list at least two weeks before the cut. it was no more than a vendetta. disgusting!
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