Kangaroos are not indigenous to San Antonio.
But Kangaroo Courts are.
And Mark Mays has his troop of kangaroos all lined up.
On Friday, a Texas state court in Bexar County did exactly what we all knew it would do.
It hurriedly issued three rulings in favor of Clear Channel.
You were expecting what? Justice?
Kangaroo court justice denied the banks’ request to dismiss litigation against them in the dubious sale of this shell of a company to private equity carnivores BainCapital and Thomas H. Lee.
Betcha didn't you know that the kangaroo court was invented in Texas. The term was first used in the mid 1800’s in the Lone Star state to reference courts that sided with local claim jumpers.
What’s changed? Not much when your initials are C.C.
The kangaroo court decision gives Clear Channel rights to hop to and pursue charges that the six banks involved in the deal – (Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, Royal Bank of Scotland, Deutsche Bank, and Wachovia), wrongly interfered with its closing by backing out of their $19.5 billion financing commitment.
The court also granted Clear Channel and Bain/Lee’s extra bounce request for expedited trial scheduled for June 2.
What Stonehenge was to the Druids, Bexar Court is to Mark Mays.
The banks argue that they had not reached agreement on a number of financing issues when Clear Channel and Bain/Lee filed suit, which “exemplifies the reason why New York courts will not specifically enforce a contract to lend money," the filing read.
New York translation: How can you have a deal if there is no deal?
Bain/Lee seeks "specific performance" of a commitment letter that details the plans to fund the deal.
Specific performance means one party gets a judge to order the other party to stick to a contract.
Bexar translation: You have a deal even if you don’t have a deal.
Let’s hear what Clear Channel has to say about the decision.
“We are grateful the court saw through the banks' latest attempt to escape responsibility for the enormous damage they have caused our company. We look forward to taking this case to a Texas jury on June 2."
And what’s on the minds of the lending institutions involved? Step up to the mic, please.
“The Banks stand by their obligations under the Commitment Letter and now look forward to the opportunity to be heard in court. We were actively negotiating the many important open items in the credit agreements when the sponsors launched this litigation, constraining further discussions.”
While the banks and Clear Channel swapped statements, the shiver of lawyers involved gloated over the imminent billable hours.
That’s what lawyers love about the legal system. The more money you pony up, the more your rights get protected.
Now, here come the judge. Another one. Next Friday, there’ll be a hearing in San Antonio court before Judge Joe Francis Brown, Jr.
This one will deal with the tortuous interference of contract claim. The banks filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that Bain/Lee should be dismissed from the action under the forum selection clause in the debt commitment letter.
Since we’re dealing with a marsupial court, expect this Judge to schedule a preliminary injunction hearing or some reasonable facsimile just to screw with the New York court.
What part of a judge being required to exercise good judgment do you not understand?
I looked up “kangaroo court” in Wikipedia. It said, “Kangaroo courts are judicial proceedings that deny due process in the name of expediency.
The outcome of such a trial is essentially made in advance, usually for the purpose of providing a conviction, either by going through the motions of manipulated procedure or by allowing no defense at all.”
If it hops like a kangaroo, talks like a kangaroo, you can be reasonably sure it’s a kangaroo.
Murray Saul's first public appearance in thirty years