Yesterday I wrote about the order Kazan Law obtained punishing Union Oil for not producing its corporate witness to testify about its past wrong-doing toward asbestos victims. On the same day as Judge Jo-Lynne Q. Lee of the Alameda County Superior Court issued that order, she also punished Union Oil’s parent company, Chevron, for similar misconduct in an asbestos exposure case. Judge Lee granted Kazan Law partner Justin Bosl’s request to sanction Chevron $1,060 in the asbestos exposure case of Patricia and Billy Joe Sendle.
Billy Joe Sendle was a longtime welder for PG&E in Richmond, Merced, and Fairfield, California. During his work he encountered an asbestos pipe-coating called Somastic, which was developed and licensed by Chevron. He brought the asbestos dust home on his clothing and person. His wife, Patricia, was exposed to that dust, especially when doing his laundry. She now has mesothelioma. Chevron delayed producing its corporate witness for months, resulting in Judge Lee’s order sanctioning it. We hope Chevron will produce a witness soon for this asbestos exposure case to answer for its actions in developing and selling a deadly product.
Related post: Judge Orders Monetary Sanctions Against Union Oil
Frank Rondon was exposed to asbestos in brakes supplied by Union Oil when he worked as a service station attendant at Felix Union 76 in Los Altos, California in the early 1970s. Mr. Rondon came to Kazan Law for help after tragically learning that he has mesothelioma.
On November 22, 2013, Alameda County Superior Court Judge Jo-Lynne Q. Lee granted a preferential trial date and issued an order to defendants Union Oil to provide deposition dates for their corporate representatives no later than December 20, 2013.
Union Oil attended the case management conference on December 20th with no date to offer. In response, Judge Lee issued a second order to Union Oil to provide dates for deposition of their corporate representatives no later than January 7, 2014. Counsel for Union Oil promised she would oblige.
On January 10, 2014, despite Judge Lee’s multiple orders and the promises of their counsel, Union Oil still had not provided dates for the deposition. Judge Lee ordered monetary sanctions against Union Oil in the amount of $200.00. It may not seem like much, but we’ve learned that money is all big companies care about, and with Judge Lee’s active intervention, we hope Union Oil will finally produce a witness who can be forced to admit the facts about corporate wrongdoing. This means that Kazan Law partner Justin Bosl will have a stronger case when we go to trial.
Related post: Chevron Punished for Misconduct in Asbestos Exposure Case