VIENNA, Va., July 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Feld Entertainment, Inc. is pleased by today's Court decision permitting the company to proceed with its federal racketeering and conspiracy (RICO) claims against the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and other animal rights groups and their lawyers.
"This ruling sets the stage for Feld Entertainment to finally have its day in court to seek justice for having to spend a decade defending itself against manufactured litigation. When parties abuse the judicial system and its process, as alleged here, there are remedies, including triple damages," said John Simpson, Fulbright & Jaworski, counsel for Feld Entertainment.
Feld Entertainment filed a federal lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against ASPCA, HSUS and other animal rights activists and their lawyers for racketeering violations, malicious prosecution, abuse of process, and the Virginia Conspiracy Act. The claims arose out of a prior case that Feld Entertainment successfully defended, resulting in a judgment in its favor on December 30, 2009, which has been affirmed in its entirety by the Court of Appeals. In that case, the Court had found, among other things, that the lead plaintiff, Tom Rider, was a paid plaintiff and fact witness with no injury "whose sole source of income throughout the litigation" was provided by his organizational co-plaintiffs and their lawyers.
In today's decision, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan recognized that Feld Entertainment had sufficient allegations to proceed with claims that the victims of the defendants' RICO violations were not only Feld Entertainment, but also members of the public who may have been improperly induced to make donations to the animal rights organizations based on the manufactured lawsuit.
About Feld Entertainment: Feld Entertainment, Inc., is the worldwide leader in producing and presenting live entertainment experiences that lift the human spirit and create indelible memories, with 30 million people in attendance at its shows each year. Feld Entertainment's productions have appeared in more than 70 countries on six continents to date and include Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, Feld Motor Sports, Disney On Ice and Disney Live! More information on Feld Entertainment is available online at www.feldentertainment.com.
SOURCE Feld Entertainment, Inc.