Of course, lawyers and litigants use the court system every day as a way to make money; entire business models like patent trolling remain legal, and the lawyers involved aren’t so much as sanctioned. But with Prenda, the difference in Wright’s mind was apparently the target—not companies but individuals, many without much money or court experience. Prenda’s plan, Wright said, was nothing less than a scheme “to plunder the citizenry.”
As for the porn trolling business model, well, it’s not dead yet. But at least it can’t be done this way.
This case has been terribly confusing for me to follow. The following comment from the comment section sums up the issue with Prenda nicely.
One issue is that lawyers aren’t supposed to misrepresent who their clients are. In this case the lawyers *are* the clients, via numerous shell corporations and offshore trusts designed to obscure that fact. The Prenda attorneys allegedly bought the IP of little-known porn movies for very little money and then set up various bogus organizations to obscure the fact that the attorneys were also the plaintiffs who would benefit from favorable judgments. IANAL but apparently that behavior is frowned upon by law-talking guys.
We have been waiting for this moment for a long time. Congratulations to everyone involved, especially Morgan and Nick.