Daily Management Review

Criminal Attorney Retained Mid Trial by GM Ignition-Switch Plaintiff


01/21/2016




Criminal Attorney Retained Mid Trial by GM Ignition-Switch Plaintiff
Following allegations by General Motors that he and his wife was making misleading statements in their testimony, an Oklahoma man suing General Motors  in the first trial in federal litigation over its massive engine switch recall has hired a criminal defense attorney.
 
The plaintiff Robert Scheuer will be represented by attorney Priya Chaudhry, and his wife Lisa will be represented by Charles Clayman, said U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman in Manhattan on Wednesday. According to their firm biographies both have extensive experience representing criminal defendants.
 
On Monday GM had claimed that the Scheuers may have given false testimony to jurors about the circumstances surrounding their eviction from their home which prompted the move. GM claimed that the Scheuers were evicted from their home months after Robert said he was injured in an accident involving a 2003 Saturn Ion, one of 2.6 million vehicles with the faulty switch recalled in 2014.
 
Scherers are a key player in an ongoing trial over the switch that is the subject of several hundred lawsuits and their credibility may be damaged if GN’s motion is successful.
  
The GM car defect has been linked to nearly 400 injuries and deaths and this is the accusation of the Scheuer’s in their lawsuit. Scheuers claims that as a result of a 2014 car crash in which his air bags failed to deploy, allegedly due to the switch, he suffered physical and emotional damages.
  
After the crash they were evicted from their "dream house" because they did not make a promised payment, the Scheuers said during testimony last week.
 
GM was contacted by the real estate agent involved in the house sale who said he believed Scheuer may have altered a check stub to make it appear as if he had sufficient funds to pay for the house, the carmaker said after the trial began.
 
This contradicted the Scheuers' accounts as to why the payment was not delivered GM said.
  
The judge was urged to deny GM’s request for the agent to testify by the civil lawyers of the Scheuers. Scheuer was not pursuing any monetary damages in connection with his housing, they said.
 
A rule o the GM’s motion is expected to be delivered by Furman in the coming days. GM’s briefs “lay out a very troubling fact pattern and raise questions that need to be answered,” said GM spokesman Jim Cain.
 
GM's request to the court was described as a bid to shift focus away from the deadly defect by Scheuer's civil lawyer Robert Hilliard. While Chaudhry declined to comment, Lisa Scheuer's criminal defense attorney could not be reached for comments by the media.
 
The case is going on at U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and is noted as General Motors Ignition Switch Litigation of No. 14-2543.
 
(Source:www.reuters.com) 






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