We are a mere 10 days from jury selection in the lawsuit against Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz. This is no longer some distant theoretical; by the end of the month, we will see the owners of the New York Mets forced to prove, in court, why they don't owe $1 billion in Bernie Madoff-invested money to Madoff's victims. Oh, and the judge has Yankees season tickets.
Jed S. Rakoff is known as a bit of a character in New York's Southern District circles, and he is not a friend to corporate scammers. The Times drops the knowledge that Rakoff owns Yankees season tickets, so Wilpon and Katz won't be counting on/fretting a Mets fan running their trial.
"All I can say in my defense is that at least I'm a Yankees fan," Rakoff said, "although, as a matter of professional courtesy, I always root for the umpire." And this:
Who could ever have imagined that the Red Sox would win the World Series? But in their refusal to accept the inevitable, they provide a lesson for all of us, even Yankees fans. There is nothing even remotely inevitable about the decline in corporate and legal ethics that helped precipitate the corporate scandals of the last few years. And it doesn't really require a Curt Schilling to turn things around. It just takes the commitment of all of us.
More than Rakoff's fandom, that sentiment should go a long way towards the defendants' discomfort.