The underlying history of Oberlander v Wolf 2020 NY Slip Op 50263(U)
Decided on February 25, 2020 Supreme Court, Suffolk County St. George, J. goes way back to issues surrounding Felix Sater. If you recognize that name, you can see the depth of history associated with this case. The story of the case and present day politics are beyond the scope of a modest blog such as this.
Here, the question is whether an extension should be granted in the filing of a complaint.
“The named defendants in this action are also New York attorneys/law firms who previously represented an individual named Felix Sater in New York courts, mostly in the federal Eastern and Southern Districts. Plaintiffs represented individuals suing Sater on various theories. The federal litigation is long-standing, somewhat complex, and it has resulted in disciplinary action taken by the District Court, Eastern District (one-year suspension commencing September 1, 2018) against Mr. Oberlander, which matter is on appeal.[FN1]
By Motion Sequence 001, plaintiffs request an enlargement of time to serve the complaint through February 8, 2019. With respect to Motion Sequence 001, defendants Robert Wolf and Moses & Singer LLP (the Wolf/LLP) defendants oppose the requested relief. The Beys, Mobargha and Beys, Liston & Mobargha, LLP (the Beys/Mobargha/LLP) defendants did not oppose Motion Sequence 001, but on the same date that opposition to Sequence 001 was filed by Wolf/LLP, the Beys/Mobargha/LLP defendants filed a notice of appearance and demand for a complaint. Asserting that, “in search of economy,” plaintiffs propose in Motion Sequence 002 that they “be allowed to litigate by one complaint;” therefore, they request that Sequence 001 and Sequence 002 be consolidated for determination by the Court.[FN2] Motion Sequence 002 requests an enlargement of time to serve the complaint to a date that the Court “sees fit.”[FN3] The Wolf/LLP defendants and the Beys/Mobargha/LLP defendants each oppose Motion Sequence 002.
The named defendants assert that both of the pending motions should be denied and that the action should be dismissed pursuant to CPLR § 3012 (b) since plaintiffs cannot demonstrate both a reasonable excuse for the delay in serving the complaint and a meritorious cause of action.”
“There is no support in the submissions to this Court supporting the hyperbolic claim of the plaintiffs in the unsworn summons with notice that the “defendants filed in court over a period of time repeated misrepresentations of fact they knew or recklessly indifferent in not knowing were false with the specific intent to frame plaintiffs for attempted murder (sic)” (Notice, paragraph 45).
Although plaintiffs fail to delineate their basis for claiming that the defendants violated the Judiciary Law, it appears that the claim is based upon the same allegations constituting their claim for common law fraud. In this same vein, as supported by the submitted records of the federal court proceedings and decisions, it is evident that Sater’s attorneys both past and present, who are the named defendants in this action, appear to have engaged in appropriate representation of their client’s interests, without any evidence having been submitted to this Court that remotely supports plaintiffs’ claim that the defendants violated Judiciary Law § 487 making it a misdemeanor for an attorney who “[i]s guilty of any deceit or collusion, or consents to any deceit or collusion, with intent to deceive the court or any party” (Judiciary Law § 487 ; see also Lazich, supraat 754).”