Timothy Litzenburg, one of the lead plaintiffs' attorneys in the shakedown of Monsanto, has pleaded guilty to the attempted extortion of $200 million from another company. Litzenburg also collaborates with Carey Gillam and her anti-GMO organization U.S. Right to Know.
Most days, the world is unfair. Bad people succeed, good people fail, and those who deserve justice never get it.
But on some days -- some glorious days -- the world doles out just deserts, the sort of sweet, poetic justice that typically only occurs in Dirty Harry movies. This past Friday was one of those days.
Surely, Timothy Litzenburg is a wealthy man. As one of the lead plaintiffs' attorneys suing Monsanto over the alleged (but factually incorrect) claim that its product Roundup (glyphosate) causes cancer, he likely has had several nice paydays in recent years as the company has been slammed with one jackpot verdict after another. Lawsuits have cost its parent company, Bayer, billions of dollars.
The trouble with money, however, is that no matter how much you have, you never really have enough. You always want more.
Litzenburg wanted more, too, and he knew just how to do it. After seeing how easy it was to use junk science and sympathetic cancer patients (who Litzenburg referred to as a "parade of horribles"), he threatened to unleash hell on a different company called Nouryon unless they cooperated with him. And by "cooperated," I mean capitulated to his extortion scheme. Instead, according to the Wall Street Journal, Nouryon called the U.S. Department of Justice.
That's when things began to unravel for Litzenburg and his partner-in-crime (ahem, law partner) Daniel Kincheloe, who on Friday pleaded guilty to the attempted extortion of $200 million from Nouryon. According to local ABC News affiliate WHSV, they admitted to threatening to financially destroy the company unless it forked over $200 million in "consulting fees." If Nouryon agreed, Litzenburg admitted that he would try to lose any case against the company and deter further litigation.
Unbelievably, they also admitted that they weren't going to give any of this money to their clients -- you know, the cancer patients they claim to be helping. Instead, they intended to keep all the money for themselves and their associates.
Litzenburg and Kincheloe will be sentenced on September 18. (Hopefully, it involves dressing in an orange jumpsuit and working on the roadside spraying weeds with Roundup.) I tried to look up the website and the LinkedIn page for their law firm, Kincheloe, Litzenburg & Pendleton. Neither are available. I suppose when two of three partners are possibly headed to prison, it's time to update the letterhead.
Carey, Carey Quite Contrary
Timothy Litzenburg collaborated with Carey Gillam and her anti-GMO organization, U.S. Right to Know. Together, they formed part of the activist-legal complex that Dr. Josh Bloom and I warned about, describing it as "an unholy alliance of activists and trial lawyers who deploy various pseudoscientific tricks to score multibillion-dollar lawsuits against large companies."
With the assistance of people like Litzenburg, Gillam has built a career demonizing and flat-out lying about scientists, accusing them of being paid shills for Monsanto. But now, we know the reality: This was one gigantic, pathological case of projection. Gillam just assumed that everybody else is a criminal because her collaborator is one.