by Steven Ertelt
August 10, 2006
Trenton, NJ (LifeNews.com) — A state appeals court has sided with an abortion business in Englewood saying it did not file a frivolous lawsuit against a pro-life law firm that assisted pro-life protesters in a case. Metropolitan Medical Associates sued the Legal Center for Defense of Life two years ago but the law firm filed a complaint saying it was frivolous.
Upset that pro-life people were protesting, the abortion business sued the city of Englewood saying it wasn’t doing enough to enforce local ordinances.
A state Superior Court judge dismissed the case, but the pro-life law firm filed a complaint saying the lawsuit cost it $20,000 in legal fees, according to a report int he East Bergen Record.
Superior Court Judge Gerald Escala dismissed the complaint, but an appeals court overturned the ruling saying Escala didn’t provide any reasons for the dismissal. Escala came back and wrote a legal paper explaining his reasons and the state appeals court on Wednesday upheld his decision.
According to the Record, the appeals court said Escala followed proper procedural rules for dismissing the frivolous lawsuit complaint.
However, the appeals court did not say anything about whether the abortion businesses lawsuit was frivolous, a point that upsets Richard Collier, president of the pro-life law firm.
"It seems the judges are going out of their way to avoid saying that," he told the Record newspaper. "They are coming up with all sorts of reasons to avoid a hot issue."
He indicated the lawsuit was clearly frivolous, saying "Instead of suing the picketers, they sued their attorneys."
Lawrence Kleiner, the lawyer for the abortion center, disagreed and said MMA sued the pro-life law firm because it was instructing the protesters on how to protest.