The lawsuit alleging that Nasser Kazeminy funneled $75,000 to Norm Coleman because “senators don’t make shit” should be discontinued, according to the attorney who brought the civil case in a Texas court last year.
That’s because Kazeminy, a Minnesota businessman who is a friend and donor to the former senator, has since manipulated the structure of the company at the heart of the dispute — leaving the plaintiff without standing to sue.
“Our goose got cooked,” said Casey Wallace, who represents Paul McKim, the former CEO of Deep Marine Technology and a minority shareholder in the company.
The value of the Deep Marine stock McKim owns was reduced to a penny after a merger that Kazeminy helped engineer, Wallace said, leaving his client with no choice but to ask the judge to discontinue the suit in a court hearing on Monday at which the defendants urged dismissal.
The case will come to an end either way, as long as the judge agrees with one side or the other, in a ruling expected by week’s end.
That would be a victory for Kazeminy, who Wallace said used delays — ordered by the court for what turned out to be a “whitewash” investigation that “ratified” the defense’s position — to complete the merger.
The lawsuit’s end would also leave unresolved the question of whether Kazeminy forced Deep Marine Technology, the Texas company he controls, to make a series of payments to Hays Companies, the St. Paul insurance firm that employs the former senator’s wife, Laurie Coleman.
But Wallace said the Kazeminy-Coleman charges, along with the rest of the suit, could be revived in future legal action, either by McKim or other minority shareholders.
Checks entered into evidence show that Deep Marine sent $75,000 to Hays Companies, and two sworn statements say Kazeminy, out of concern for the Colemans’ financial situation, wanted yet another $25,000 to be disbursed.
Coleman isn’t named as a defendant in the case, and the suit alleges only that Kazeminy directed the money to Hays with the Colemans in mind. Despite immediate and continuing claims that the case amounted to nothing more than political blackmail, “We never tried to connect the dots to the Colemans,” Wallace said.
Indeed, although the cash-funneling charges have been the focus of media attention since the lawsuit was filed, shortly before the election last fall, Wallace said they are “very near the bottom — no, on the bottom” among a litany of financial misdeeds that McKim’s suit alleges.
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