January 7, 2008

Clemens Files Defamation Suit

Roger Clemens has filed a defamation suit against Brian McNamee in Harris County District Court (Texas). The 14-page document can be found here.

McNamee will likely be filing a counter lawsuit.

The AP reports that the suit states (pages 10-11):
[W]hen McNamee told others that when he first was interviewed by federal law enforcement last June, he denied Clemens had used steroids or human growth hormone. The suit quotes McNamee as saying he was pressured by Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Parrella and IRS Special Agent Jeff Novitzky -- key members of the BALCO prosecution -- to implicate Clemens. The suit did not attribute where the quote from McNamee was obtained.

"After this exchange, and for the first time in his life, McNamee stated that he had injected Clemens with steroids in 1998, 2000 and 2001," the suit said. "Following his recantation, McNamee has relayed that he magically went from a 'target' in a federal criminal drug investigation to a mere 'witness,' so long as he continued to 'toe the line.'"
Clemens will hold a press conference today at 5 PM.

35 comments:

Ben said...

This was not what I expected at all - I would think a court battle would be the last thing Clemens would want. I'm wondering where the burden of proof would lie in this. Does Clemens have to prove the accusations are false to win the suit?

s1c said...

If I was a the federal prosecutor and I saw this and the 1 hour phone call on friday between McNamee and Clinton, then today, I would be in front of a judge getting a subpoena for Clemens for witness tampering.

This is going to be so much theater in the next few weeks / months / years.

redsock said...

Yeah, I hope this goes on for awhile. No settlement!!!!

With Billy's bluster and Mr. Hankee's spewing in the Bronx, this promises to be a fun year.

s1c said...

listening to Espn radio and Stephen Smith is just killing FB.

"My body didn't change, Are you fricking kidding me, have you looked at your head?"

Stephens producer thinks that Rahger filed the law suit so that he can shut up at the press conference today and the hearings next week. We will let the courts decide.

Talk radio is going to have so much fodder the next few days!

Amy said...

Defamation law is not my area of expertise, but to answer Ben's question, the plaintiff generally does carry the burden of proving the truth of the allegations in the complaint. I find this whole complaint rather bizarre---the level of detail (in particular the allegations about the rape charges against McNamee and the details about Clemen's childhood) is pretty strange for a complaint like this. I think Clemens is not ever expecting this to go to trial, but is just using the legal system to get more PR and to defame McNamee as best he can.

If there are any defamation experts out there, I'd love to see a comment on this complaint. Also, as a public figure, Clemens carries a heavier burden than a private figure in alleging defamation---that is, he has to allege that McNamee made these statement with knowledge of their falsity. I don't see a specific allegation making that assertion.

Jere said...

WOw, TC just came on NESN saying they won't show the press conference for fear of foul language. Or something. Switched over to ESPN, and here it is.

Okay, they're about to play the phone call tape. That's the thing with swears, I think. And ESPN is about to play it.

redsock said...

Roidger's lawyers say this will not prevent him from testifying at the congressional hearing.

We'll see.

Amy said...

oohhh, ROIDger! Love it! Haven't seen that before.

Jere said...

Long beep, covering whole sentence, then a "shit" gets through. So far I have no idea what they're talking about in this phone call.

redsock said...

As far as McNamee's possible anger and desire to get back at Billy, according to FB's comments last night, they were on good speaking terms as late as a few days before the Mitchell Report came out.

Jere said...

This is bizarre. What's all this talk about McNamee's kids having diseases and stuff?

redsock said...

While true, I'm amused by the "low run support" excuse in paragraph 25of the filing.

redsock said...

What's all this talk about McNamee's kids having diseases and stuff?

Like ears growing out their foreheads???

Jere said...

Ooh, finally, Roger says, "I don't know why you did it." McNamee without saying anything, acts like, Well, you shouldn't have let me inject you with those steroids. That's what it sounds like to me. "I did what I thought was right," says McNamee.

Why does Brian keep saying "Brian." Jimmy's gonna lose it! Don't touch Jimmy! Is he talking about his son? Why would Brian say "Brian's got nothin to do with this."?

"Tell me what you want me to do?"--McNamee. "I learned from you how to raise my kids." So? What the fuck are these people talking about? Is this a joke?

Jere said...

Oh, Roger caught in a lie here. McNamee trying to say he knew Radomski's name and told Clemens, Clemns talking *loudly* (that's how you win arguments and prove the other guy's lying, ha), saying "I didn't know that cat!"

Jere said...

Is this a Jerky Boys tape?

"I robbed one down in Jersey and I drove it up here to New York."

This sounds like Bump Bailey and Pop in the dugout in The Natural. "What do you want from me?" "I want you to sit down and shut up!" "What do you want, an apology?"

Jere said...

The first question of this press conference should be "What the fuck was that??" The second should be, "why didn't you answer the guy when he asked you what you wanted him to do, a thousand times?"

redsock said...

So someone released the tape of the conversation? It sounds like gold(, Jerry! Gold)!

What about the Q&A with the mediots?

Jere said...

The 17-minute tape was just played, now Q & A starts, 5:42 PM

Jere said...

Oh this is such horseshit. Now Roger up. Acting holier than thou. "I can't even look at some of you."

Jere said...

Okay, they ask about the "what do you want me to do?"

Fatty says he thought he was very forceful with him. (I heard no answer to "what do you want me to do?" Was asked ten times.)

Jere said...

They ask again. Roger again fails to say why he didn't answer. Now Roger acting mad, conveniently right after a guy asks why he wasn't more angry on the phone, like he was on 60 Mins

Jere said...

"I've always said I've gotten shots from Brian McNamee"

LIE!

Jere said...

Ho. ly. Shit. This guy is the Drew Peterson of baseball players. The smug attitude, knowing he's got a chance of getting away with it. Asking "can I drink water?" VERY sarcastically--reference to his lawyer earlier saying "we had to worry about having water because after 60 Mins, people accused him of drinking to much water. As he drinks, he starts sweating profusely, right after being asked whether HGH users are cheaters.

Jere said...

Smart move by Roger's team to not take polygraph, what with the fact that he becomes outwardly nervous, starts yelling, and sweating when asked certain questions.

Jere said...

Hahaha. Lawyer hands Roger note. Roger reads it out loud. "You want me to lighten up. That's hard." Lawyer barely heard to say "I gave him a note that said 'lighten up.'"

Maybe a better note would be "please stop cursing. You look like a madman. America hates madmen."

Jere said...

Why did I have a feeling all along this would end up with him pulling a "my dad at Scrabble," walking out of the room abrubtly ending the whole thing?

Jere said...

To clear up from earlier. Roger knew he was being taped in the phone call. McNamee did not.

Clemens' team's defense is, Look, he never said "I injected you," etc. But what I got from it was he never said he didn't, either, (like, never said, "I had to tell them because it's what they wanted to hear" or whatever.)

And what I think is that McNamee was talking knowing that the two of them knew together that IT HAPPENED. Whereas Roger was talking knowing everyone was listening. McNamee didn't need to say "I injected you" because he knows Roger knows he did because they were both there.

I'll shut up for a while now...

redsock said...

Thanks a lot for the updates, Jere.

This sounds great! Hopefully the tape will also be posted online.

We're out for the evening, so I can't put comments through until later.

Maxwell Horse said...

So, uh, for those of us who forgot to watch the press conference, did Roger some off as much of an ass as some of these comments imply that he did? Or did the conference help Roger take that first step toward getting public support?

s1c said...

According to Sox and Pinstripes, it should be noted that taping of phone calls only needs to be consented by one of the participants in the states of Texas and New York.

As we learn more about McNamee it seems to me that Clemens is trying to paint this as a "look he was pressured to give up a big fish and that was me, and because of his family situation he agreed and I can understand that, but the lies need to be exposed".

So, Roidger is going to be attacking the feds as the real bad guys with poor little Roidger being the framed, innocent person who only wanted to pitch.

I am really starting to think that the Feds were in the process of investigating Roidger and this is a way that the Clemens team has decided to take out their number one witness in a pre-emptive strike.

Of course all of this could be just delusional thinking on my part brought on by Mike, but then again if it is Federal investigation time we could be seeing Bond's two.

s1c said...

The phone call recording can be heard here.

9casey said...

Mcnamee states in the phone call that his son is dying...And that he was offered 7 figures to go on tv.....and if what he says was true ...What is he doing talking to Clemens on the phone..take the money and save your child..now i don't know if he was saying he was dying because of all the pressure or if he is really dying,,but, man save your child......I also don't know if he is asking Clemens for money in some round about way, and it also seems as though he knows the phone call is being taped

Between the 60 minutes deal and this press conference today.......
This has been the most bizzare thing I have seen in some while.....

It seems as though this going to end real bad...........It would also seem as though as the feds were on Mcnamee like white on rice.so they have to be on Clemens as well....This is going to blow up in someones face like a third ear.....

Jere said...

Supposedly, McNamee's son (10) is actually dying. That's why Roger was calling back, and able to not just yell at the guy, because he feels bad. Goes the story.

But then why did Roger keep saying "this is killin' my kids, too," as if either they're all catching some disease from being named in the report?

s1c said...

The more that comes out about McNamee's personal life, does anyone else get the feeling that this whole situation is going to end badly? I mean real badly?