Steven Kazan’s Asbestos Bankruptcy Fraud Harms All Asbestos Victims – Justice Department Files Statement of Interest Urging Transparency in the Compensation of Asbestos Claims
Steven Kazan’s decades of Asbestos Trust Fund ‘double dipping’, insider dealing, and corruption could finally be coming to an end.
The Departments of Justice ‘knows’…..
For the first time, the Justice Department has intervened in a pending Asbestos Trust Bankruptcy – Filing a Statement of Interest Urging “Transparency”. Press Release below. Here is the actual filing – Department of Justice Statement of Interest Urging Transparency in the Compensation of Asbestos Claims
Why did the Justice Department file this Statement of Interest? Decades of Asbestos Trust Fraud. Decades. Billions of dollars have been misappropriated from Asbestos Victims (the sick victims who are supposed to be Beneficiaries). Billions!
And not surprisingly, many of the worst offenders are extensively involved (as “Fiduciaries”) with the Bestwall (Georgia Pacific) Bankruptcy. Who are they?
- Steven Kazan – the Most Corrupt Lawyer in the Country. firstname.lastname@example.org. Has not only misappropriated billions from asbestos trusts, but engages in “insider dealing”, “collusion”, and fraud to harm the exact Asbestos Victims he is paid to protect (as a Fiduciary). Kazan’s corruption takes place on dozens of Trusts where he is an Asbestos Fiduciary. Owens Corning, Fibreboard, NARCO, THAN, Kaiser, Western Asbestos Settlement Trust (www.wastrust.com). In fact, it is difficult to find any Trust where Kazan has not misappropriated millions. To date, Kazan continues to receive “favorable treatment” from Trusts. Kazan’s buddies (other insiders) value his claims! This loser should be behind bars… It should be noted that EVERYTHING fraudulent the Justice Department discusses in their filing has been done by Kazan on dozens of Trusts. For example, “seeking duplicative recoveries” (Kazan is the king of Double Dipping); “Depleting resources that would otherwise be available to compensate deserving claimants” (Kazan has depleted dozens of Trusts through insider dealing); “Misrepresenting products to which Claimants were exposed” (Again, Kazan is the “king” here); “Lack of Transparency” (Kazan has been ensuring their is a lack of transparency for the 30 Trusts he is a part of); “Evidence about Asbestos exposures are misrepresented and withheld” (Kazan wrote the book on this…); “Contradictory Claims” – (Kazan has done this for decades)….Finally, it looks like the Department of Justice is on to him…Note: Other Plaintiff Lawyers Engaging in Asbestos Trust Fraud? Alan Brayton (Novato, California); Peter Kraus (Dallas, Texas);
- Ankura Consulting – this entity – despite rules prohibiting working for more than 1 Asbestos Trusts – has their (very dirty) hands in 20-30 Asbestos Trusts. Ankura Consulting is Kazan’s partner in collusion and frauds. Ankura is not just a Trust “Fiduciary” – but they are also paid and hired by Asbestos Trusts to conduct (completely sham) audits of lawyers in an effort to suppress claims and divert monies to Steven Kazan. You cannot have a more corrupt entity than Ankura Consulting. Has lied to ‘every’ Judge about their involvement in Asbestos Trusts in order to get ‘approved’ as a Fiduciary. John Brophy and his retired buffoon buddy Tom Florence are behind this fraud.!
- Sander Esserman – Like Ankura, Esserman has his (dirty) hands in dozens of Asbestos Trusts. Colludes with Steven Kazan in an effort to divert monies.
- Mary Ellen Nickel – Delaware Claims Processing Facility (DCPF) – The most corrupt FEMALE lawyer in the Country. Despite her incompetence, ‘somehow’ landed a job overseeing Billions in Trust Funds. email@example.com. A critical person in helping divert BILLIONS to Seven Kazan. I wonder what this buffoon has to say about the Press Release below.
Department of Justice Press Release
Justice Department Files Statement of Interest Urging Transparency in the Compensation of Asbestos Claims
The Department of Justice today filed a Statement of Interest in In re Bestwall LLC in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of North Carolina. In this bankruptcy case, the debtor Bestwall LLC seeks to establish a trust to resolve its asbestos liabilities pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 524(g), a provision in the Bankruptcy Code that provides the framework for responding to the unique issues associated with asbestos liability.
As part of the bankruptcy, the court will evaluate the submitted asbestos claims and estimate the amount of the debtor’s asbestos liabilities. In order to ensure the accuracy of the estimation, the debtor has asked the court to require asbestos claimants to fill out a questionnaire providing basic information about their claims and to authorize discovery from other asbestos trusts to which claimants have submitted claims. The department’s Statement of Interest supports these proposed procedures on the ground that they will further transparency in the evaluation of the submitted asbestos claims and ensure the reliability of the estimation of the debtor’s asbestos liabilities.
“It has become increasingly common for claimants’ counsel to seek duplicative recoveries from multiple sources by misrepresenting the asbestos products to which claimants were exposed,” said Deputy Assistant Attorney General Douglas Smith of the Justice Department’s Civil Division. “Such duplicative claiming depletes resources that would otherwise be available to compensate deserving claimants filing claims in the future. Today’s Statement of Interest is one of many actions the department has taken over the last several years to encourage greater transparency in asbestos bankruptcy proceedings and prevent fraud.”
“In recent years, numerous courts and commentators have recognized that many asbestos claims are based on inaccurate or even fraudulent information,” said U.S. Attorney R. Andrew Murray for the Western District of North Carolina. “That lack of transparency in the compensation of asbestos claims has been a significant problem,”
Congress enacted 11 U.S.C. § 524(g) to create a comprehensive mechanism for addressing injuries caused by asbestos. Under section 524(g), asbestos-related claims may be channeled to a special trust created under the bankruptcy plan of reorganization, which then assumes responsibility for both the defense and payment of those claims. The trusts are managed by trustees, who often must secure support for major decisions from a “trust advisory committee,” whose members are often the same attorneys who represented asbestos claimants during the bankruptcy. Since 1994, more than 60 such trusts have been established by chapter 11 debtors with asbestos-related liabilities. According to the Government Accountability Office, asbestos bankruptcy trusts paid $17.5 billion from 1988 through 2011, and more recent studies estimate higher amounts.
Both courts and commentators have expressed growing concerns that claims submitted in these bankruptcies may be fraudulent. In 2014, the same bankruptcy court in which the United States today filed its Statement of Interest found a substantial pattern of misrepresentation in another case, In re Garlock Sealing Technologies LLC, 504 B.R. 71 (Bankr. W.D.N.C. 2014). The court found that, in a sample of asbestos claims submitted before the bankruptcy, in each and every case key evidence about asbestos exposure had been misrepresented or withheld. In several instances, plaintiffs made claims against defendants to whose products they had previously represented they had never been exposed. Similarly, several studies have demonstrated problems with claims submitted to asbestos trusts. One study found that, in the study period, people without malignant asbestos injury accounted for 86 percent of all claims made to the trusts and 37 percent of all trust payments. Another found that many of the claim forms submitted by the same claimants and law firms to different trusts contradicted each other. The secrecy with which asbestos claims are processed by asbestos trusts has facilitated the payment of claims that do not deserve compensation and has made it difficult to detect when plaintiffs are seeking a recovery based on inaccurate or fraudulent representations. Recognizing this problem, 16 states have already passed legislation requiring disclosure of basic information regarding other sources of asbestos compensation as well as the asbestos products to which claimants were exposed.
The United States’ Statement of Interest argues that there should be transparency in the estimation of asbestos claims in bankruptcy proceedings in order to prevent fraud and abuse. As the statement explains, courts presiding over asbestos bankruptcy cases increasingly are putting in place procedures requiring claimants to provide basic information documenting their allegations regarding product identification (and other elements of their claims) as well as any prior claims they have filed in the courts or with other asbestos trusts. Courts increasingly recognize that such transparency is critical to the fair and efficient resolution of asbestos claims.
Today’s filing is part of broader efforts by the department to look for opportunities to increase the transparency of asbestos bankruptcy proceedings and asbestos trusts in order to protect the interests of legitimate claimants and the United States. This includes objecting to bankruptcy plans that lack critical provisions to ensure transparency and accountability and to prevent fraudulent claims and mismanagement of asbestos trust funds, including provisions: that require compliance with the Medicare Secondary Payer Statute that notify claimants of their potential obligation to reimburse Medicare; that prevent excessive administrative costs and attorney contingency fees; that avoid conflicts of interest among members of the trust advisory committee; and that prevent payments to those who cannot demonstrate exposure to the defendants’ products or who have made inconsistent claims in other asbestos proceedings.
This matter is being handled by the Justice Department’s Civil Division with assistance from the U.S. Trustee Program and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina.