Paul Ceglia claims that he owns half of Facebook. And, to get his fair share, he has a veritable army behind him: the attorneys of DLA Piper, a 4,200 attorney firm with global presence. BigLaw's got your back, Ceglia!
Wait, BigLaw doesn't have your back. DLA Piper has withdrawn from representing Ceglia in his Facebook suit. DLA Piper hasn't said why they have withdrawn from the case due to attorney-client privilege, reports CNet.
But, one can definitely still speculate.
Perhaps it has something to do with the merits of the case? Or the personality of the client?
Ceglia's claim is this: he hired Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg though Craigslist to code a website called StreetFax. He not only paid Zuckerberg money for the code, but he also put in $1,000 into "The Face Book" project, which Ceglia claims gives him a 50% interest in the company and a 1% interest for everyday the project was delayed past January 1, 2004, reports CNet.
Ceglia's claims are backed up with email exchanges and a canceled check made out to Zuckerberg, according to CNet. Facebook says that the email exchanges are forgeries.
DLA Piper said that they did hours of due diligence on Ceglia's Facebook suit before even taking it on. So, maybe the recent departure has more to do with a personality issue?
Before DLA Piper's departure, Ceglia had already gone through a few other attorneys including prominent attorney Terrence Connors, reports paidContent.
Ceglia will now be represented by San Diego lawyer Jeffrey Lake, reports paidContent. His firm also represents about 200 medical marijuana collectives, according to CNet.
Whether or not Paul Ceglia's case will survive is unclear, though Facebook has filed for expedited discovery. They want to show that Ceglia's email evidence is a fake. Though, if things don't go well for Ceglia, he will no longer have a big DLA Piper shoulder to cry on.
- Lawyers for Ceglia in Facebook claim withdraw (Reuters)
- Facebook Calls Ceglia Ownership Lawsuit a "Fraud" (FindLaw's Courtside)
- Could Paul Ceglia's Email Prove He Owns Half of Facebook? (FindLaw's Technologist)
- Could an Email Cost You Half Your Business? (FindLaw's Free Enterprise)