The momentum swung back in Facebook’s favor in Paul Ceglia’s suit against the social network and Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg in a hearing today in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York.
Cegila’s request for more time for broad discovery was shot down by Judge Leslie Foschio, and a source close to Facebook said the judge was very critical of Ceglia and his legal team.
The source said Foschio expressed doubt that Ceglia’s team could explain the existence of the authentic contract between Ceglia and Zuckerberg related to a different website, StreetFax, and that at one point, the judge referred to an avalanche of fraud.
The next step, as outlined by Foschio, according to the source: Ceglia’s legal team has two months to provide its expert reports, followed by two months of expert depositions, and another two months for its opposition of Facebook’s motion to dismiss the case. Facebook will then file its reply.
The source concluded:
This timeline is what we expected, and we got exactly what we wanted – a good schedule focused only on the question of fraud.
And Orin Snyder, partner at Gibson Dunn and attorney for Facebook and Zuckerberg, issued the following statement:
We are very pleased with today’s ruling. The court denied Ceglia’s request for broad discovery and continues to focus these proceedings solely on the question of Ceglia’s criminal fraud. We welcome the opportunity to develop additional evidence of Ceglia’s misconduct and look forward to having him held accountable.
Readers: Do you think there is any chance that Ceglia and his legal team can swing the momentum their way in the next two months?