Posted on: February 2, 2012 10:47 am

L.A. hits town's PGA Tour sponsor with lawsuit

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Intentionally or not, the City of Los Angeles certainly timed the announcement to ensure maximum impact.

Attorneys for the city have sued Northern Trust, the title sponsor of the town’s PGA Tour event, alleging that the company frittered away city pension funds on reckless investments.

The city seeks $95 million from Northern Trust, whose tour event begins in two weeks at famed Riviera Country Club.

"Northern Trust made false claims and statements regarding its management of the assets of the Los Angeles City Employees' Retirement System [LACERS] in order to receive payments as a custodian bank and securities lending agent," according to the complaint, which was filed in Superior Court and excerpted in the L.A. Times.

As though the case alone isn't bad enough in terms of public relations, the timing could prove even more embarrassing, since Northern Trust has been hammered before for allegedly wasting money tied directly to the tour event itself.

Three years ago, after taking federal bailout money, the company was savaged by politicians and critics for staging a series of exclusive concerts, attended mostly by special invitees and featuring artists such Grammy winner Sheryl Crow.

A Northern Trust spokesman told the L.A. Times: "The Los Angeles Employees Retirement System did not lose money on securities lending. We regret that this meritless lawsuit will likely cost the LACERS pension plan, and the city of Los Angeles, millions of dollars in unnecessary legal fees and out-of-pocket expenses."

That’s the beauty of working for investment companies like Northern Trust – just like with the lawyers who will butt heads on this issue, they get paid regardless of whether they win or lose.

L.A.'s been tough of late on the tour's title sponsors. Last year, the city sued Deutsche Bank over a foreclosure issue, calling the company "slumlords."


Posted on: February 2, 2012 10:17 am
Edited on: February 2, 2012 5:26 pm

Mickelson sues to quash on-line Canucklehead

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Attention flamers, vicious posters and other reputation-savaging knuckleheads who hide behind the anonymity of chatroom walls while tossing grenades at others:

Phil Mickelson is fighting back.

In a move that could bring unintended light to a very personal issue, Mickelson filed suit in Canada to learn the identity of a person who has been ripping him on the Internet.

According to the Courthouse News Service, Mickelson alleges in the complaint that "the postings suggest that plaintiff has an illegitimate child, that his wife has affairs and other similar vexatious statements that are absolutely untrue and, simply put, vicious.”

Mickelson has long been dogged by wild and absurd rumors, and his wife Amy has even been known to make jokes with friends about them.

But nobody’s kidding around this time.

"I'm all for freedom of speech, but I won't tolerate defamation, and so I've got a great attorney who's on it," he said after the first round of the Phoenix Open on Thurday.

Mickelson sought and was granted by San Diego Superior Court the right to subpoena Yahoo! for information about the identities of two screen names, "Fogroller" and "Longitude," and Yahoo! responded with Fogroller's Internet protocol address, which is registered to a Videotron subscriber, according to the Courthouse News report.  

The news report states that Videotron's attorney said Mickelson needs a court order for the company to provide him with the information. In the filing, Mickelson seeks the court order.

"It is urgent, and in the best interest of justice, to accurately identify the person using the 'Fogroller' pseudonym and posting these offensive and defamatory statements, in order to stop the dissemination of false and wrongful statements about the plaintiff and obtain reparation for the prejudice already suffered," the complaint states, according to Courthouse News.

Reparation, of course, is the legal euphemism that broadly means "blood and money."


Category: Golf
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com