Judge Auctioned on eBay

The latest weirdness on eBay involves a woman, Janet Schoenberg, who put Judge Jerald R. Klein of the New York City Housing Court up for sale, free worldwide shipping included. Why did she do this? Because he had been involved in the legal process whereby she was evicted from her East Village apartment, and this was her way of getting back at him. She listed his sale under "Sporting goods, archery, arrows, shafts" (shafts... get it?). The hoax auction wasn't caught by eBay until bidding had already reached $127.50. Now Judge Klein is considering whether he should pursue legal action against Ms. Schoenberg. But the question is: would listing him for sale be considered as libel, or would it be protected as a form of parody? The NY Times got an opinion from a lawyer who thinks it's potentially libelous.


Posted on Wed Dec 15, 2004


I would think that offering to deliver him to the highest bidder (presumably someplace he doesn't want to go)could be construed as a conspiracy to abduct the judge, so she could possibly be subject to racketeering charges (federal charges if the buyer is in another state).
Of course, it would depend on whether a grand jury could be convinced that the offer was seriously intended.
Posted by Big Gary C  in  Dallas, Texas  on  Wed Dec 15, 2004  at  02:50 PM
Just think of the benefits of owning your own judge, tho'. Get out of parking tickets and fines, no more pesky trials with "witnesses" and "evidence". Sueing everyone you know for millions. Hell, you could even start your own pharmaceutical company.
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Tue Dec 21, 2004  at  03:47 PM
Gee, a lawyer had an opinion it could be "libelous".

No kidding. How much he asks?
Posted by jack  on  Fri Dec 24, 2004  at  07:59 PM
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