(June 14, 2007) -- I’m taking notes in Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein’s spacious courtroom atop the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse at 500 Pearl Street in New York.
This, as lawyers from United Air Lines, American Airlines, Boeing Corporation, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, World Trade Center Properties, et al, make a motion for a determination of applicable law and for dismissal of all punitive damage claims as well as certain government discovery in the 9/11 damage suits.
The fleet of high-priced lawyers fills half the paneled courtroom. A packed gallery fills the other half. Among the corporate legal fleet are a smaller number of lawyers for the remaining plaintiffs who did not take the 9/11 Victim Compensation money.
One of plaintiffs’ lawyers, Greg Joseph, is noted to say, “Any trial is a good trial.”
The corporate lawyers parry and thrust in legalese with Judge Hellerstein. They seem to admire their own wit, deferring to his, his quips, assertions of power, interruptions and anecdotes.