In a filing on September 6, 2006, Martin Singer, cofounder of Lavely & Singer, said he had engaged in “extensive settlement discussions” with the plaintiffs’ lawyer and they had exchanged “various drafts of a proposed settlement agreement.” The discussions ended after the plaintiffs’ lawyer wanted a settlement “with both plaintiffs simultaneously, rather than separately,” said Singer. The plaintiffs voluntarily dismissed the case on October 23, 2006.
Asked if the case was dismissed because Platinum had reached a settlement with the two women, Singer refused to say, instead responding that “the manner of dismissal was confidential.”
In the lawsuit, and in a letter sent to the Reader by a Platinum outside attorney (see accompanying article), Platinum vehemently denied the allegations of wrongdoing. The letter from Platinum’s attorney pointed out that the allegations were not proved.
Mark Barnhill, a Platinum principal, responded to Reader queries with a written quote similar to what Platinum attorney Eva Kalawski gave to Dennis Kneale: “Successful companies often become targets for gratuitous lawsuits filled with unfounded allegations. Platinum has not been immune. Fortunately, we have only had to deal with a handful of these in our 14 years of operation.”
Both suits were filed by San Francisco lawyer David Mattingly. Platinum doesn’t disguise its contempt for him. In an April 25, 2007 court filing, William Briggs II, an attorney with the Lavely & Singer law firm, wrote, “This case arises from the misguided hubris of plaintiff and his counsel who apparently believe that they can harass and embarrass the defendant into a settlement. The plaintiff, who hides behind the fictional moniker of John Doe, has run to a notorious attorney who is known to fabricate sham claims in an attempt to extract large legal settlements.”
Mattingly, who was phoned three times and also sent an email with questions, would only say, “Some day I will help you. I can’t help you now.”