Game Time! Here’s the Key Brief in the Most Important Stage of Ted Rall v. Los Angeles Times

Ted Rall v. Los Angeles Times et al. – California Court of Appeals – Reply Brief – September 10, 2018

(Duplicate first page – keep scrolling, please.)

It’s game time! We have reached the most important stage in “Ted Rall v. Los Angeles Times et al.”

Let me explain.

From the beginning of this case attorneys have told me that the toughest barrier to clearing my name and getting my day in court would be California’s anti-SLAPP law, a statute frequently used by publications to defend themselves against defamation lawsuits.

Upon being sued a defamation defendant can file an anti-SLAPP motion. Discovery cannot begin until it is resolved. If defendant prevails, plaintiff’s case is thrown out and plaintiff pays defendent’s legal fees. If plaintiff prevails, the case begins discovery, subpoenas, etc. A lower court, the California Superior Court in Los Angeles, heard the LA Times’ anti-SLAPP motion. They ruled for the Times, awarding them $356,000 in legal fees.

But that decision is automatically appealable de novo (without consideration for what the lower court decided). So I appealed to California’s Court of Appeals.

We filed an Opening Brief. The Times filed a Reply Brief. This is our Reply Brief to their Reply. No more briefs now. Now we wait for the court to assign a hearing date. At that date or shortly thereafter, probably in early 2019, the Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments.

Although lawsuits are always long and time-consuming and stressful, most attorneys believe that a jury will side with me in this matter, rather than the Times/LAPD.

Please read the brief!

I look forward to reading your thoughts and comments. This case is important to me, but it also has sweeping implications for employment law and the freedom of journalists to operate free of censorship by government agencies and officials.


  • ” No more briefs now”

    So … going commando?

    Good luck as always, Ted. I promise to read all 68 pages of the brief at some point. Soon. No, really. Why do they call 68 pages ‘brief’ anyway?

  • I read the brief (I, too, pause to consider the cynicism of describing a 60+page document “brief.”) and I come away with two observations:

    First, lie detector test results are not admissible in court. Because, basically, they’re worthless. Right up there with astrology and police drug-sniffing dogs (which always “hit” with 100% accuracy–sometimes, the dogs react to drugs in a suspect’s car even before the police plant them in there, which means the dogs can tell the future). So, to recap, lie-detector tests are no good, but psychic dogs are. (The dogs already knew that, by the way.)

    Second, it’s a little sad to read that this has cost Ted some of his friends. The almost total silence in the media on this has been stunning to me. Truly. Because the case, at least as described, is so blatantly a screw job, that it practically writes itself. And although the media has been bending its best to accommodate the corrective baton of the powerful for so long, I still am astonished each time it happens. The New York Times did it during the RNC visit when the police arrested hundreds of protesters and, when the cases finally got to court, the protesters came with unedited video that showed the police videos had been edited in a biased fashion. Suddenly, all those cases got dropped. And the Times didn’t write a thing about it. Police deception in New York City against citizens exercising their First Amendment rights, and the Times simply let it go right by. I think they posted one item on a blog. So that’s really sad, but I still thought that journalists were, at least behind the scenes, supportive of each other and a free and independent press.

    You may all laugh at my naivete.

    I hope some of Ted’s “friends” do the right thing and apologize when he wins. Apologize for letting him get worked over by the bulls in the yard while they looked the other way. And then maybe a few of them ought to stop wasting everyone’s time with pretending that they’re on our side. Maybe get some jobs at the LAPD Press Office or with tronc or Fox.

    What a terrible world we have inherited. What a morally bankrupt awful place.

  • Congratulations Ted.

    I just now finished a first reading of your brief.

    I like the part where you subtly point out where your former employer cynically tries to exempt himself from employment law under their specious interpretation of their First Amendment rights.

    In my opinion the brief holds together excellently and presents facts in a way that any jury should easily find convincing.

    I can’t imagine the appellate court finding other than in your favor.

    Thanks for sharing this brief with your readers.