On Christmas Eve 2016, I received a threatening letter from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, a white shoe Wall Street law firm hired by Andrew Murstein, president of Medallion Financial (NASDAQ:MFIN). Disclosure: in addition to this blog, I’ve written a whole, whole lot about MFIN in comments on the online investment sites Seeking Alpha and Yahoo Finance Conversations.
Andrew is a member of Big Taxi Royalty. In 1937, his grandfather Leon Murstein purchased one of the first New York taxi medallions issued for $10. The Murstein Family went on to purchase several hundred medallions.
Unlike many, many of his borrowers, Murstein reportedly sold the majority of his medallions in 2012 and 2013 before Uber and Lyft devastated the value of taxi medallions in New York, Chicago and Boston. His company holds over $600 million of medallion loans in these three cities. His borrowers are drowning in debt.
Andrew can be reached at (212) 328-2176, by email through investor relations at www.medallion.com/investors or by mail at 437 Madison Avenue, 38th Floor, New York, New York 10022.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher is a global law firm founded in 1890 with $1,470,000,000 in revenue . Gibson Dunn has over 1,000 attorneys and 2,000 staff located in 18 offices around the world, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.
Murstein hired Gibson Dunn to scare the crap out of me.
Their mission failed.
The proposal asks for funding a team in Boston to fight predatory lending by Big Taxi lenders to the 450 taxi medallion owner operators in Boston. The team will also launch an initiative to provide portable benefits to the 30,000 Uber, Lyft and taxi drivers in Greater Boston.
Readers: I’m proud to tell you that last night, December 31, 2016, I picked up my 4000th passenger as a driver for Uber and Lyft. Yes, I timed it. Starting on August 21, 2013 I was one of the first fifty Lyft drivers in Boston. I picked up the most passengers in Boston after the first year of launch. However, at this point, hundreds of Uber and Lyft drivers have surpassed me.
I’m also a licensed taxi driver in the City of Boston, Hackney License #22344.
Unlike thousands of drivers, I’ve never depended on my Uber and Lyft income to make ends meet. Thousands of my sisters and brothers behind the wheel do. I know hundreds personally and through online driver forums. Please read about my good friend Jennifer Guidry in The New York Times.
In my previous disclosures and a project description before the market close on January 19, 2016 I benefited directly or indirectly from parties who have from time to time held short or long positions in, acted as principal in, and bought or sold the securities of companies holding taxi medallion related assets. As of the market close on January 19, 2016, I no longer benefited directly or indirectly from these parties.
If Nick or any other funder approves any version of my proposal, I will benefit financially from any consulting engagements associated with that proposal. I will be happy to sign an affidavit for all of the statements above, to provide tax returns for 2015 and 2016 and to provide the financial statements detailing my current income and expenses filed in association with my divorce to any officers of the court in any jurisdiction or to the Attorney General of Massachusetts.
Readers: I will be representing myself in court, so sorry for all this legal beagle stuff!!
Any legal action citing any compensation described above claiming I benefited after January 19, 2016 is astoundingly stupid…I mean without merit….
Gibson Dunn and Andrew Murstein have threatened to ask a judge to issue an injunction to immediately stop me from:
- Publishing and making statements critical of the behavior of Medallion Financial management
- Advocating for and attending meetings of borrowers holding medallion loans provided by Medallion Financial
- Promoting a coop of taxi medallion owner operators in Boston and other cities
Can you guys believe Big Taxi’s efforts to undermine our sacred freedom of speech, infringe on our freedom of the press, interfere with our right to assemble and attempting to prohibit the our right to petition the Attorney General of Massachusetts to redress grievances related to predatory lending and securities fraud?
We are Americans. Our First Amendment rights are inalienable.
Even a gigantic Wall Street Law Firm in an alliance with Big Taxi can’t take these rights away from us.
Here’s a great article titled Reflections on the First Amendment and the Information Economy. We have many friends at the Harvard Law School. Big Taxi does not.
Andrew has a net worth of $650,000,000.
Andrew: I’m not afraid of you…sorry you failed.
These are the two attorneys Andrew hired to threaten me:
Randy Mastro, RMastro@gibsondunn.com, Direct Line: (212) 351-3825
Randy: I’m not afraid of you…sorry you failed.
Randy served as Rudy Giuliani’s deputy from 1993 to 1998 before returning to Gibson Dunn to make money again. In January 2014, Chris Christie hired Randy to try to contain the Bridgegate scandal. Randy failed.
Anne Champion, AChampion@gibsondunn.com, Direct Line: (212) 351-5361
Anne: I’m not afraid of you…sorry you failed.
In the first entry of her online advertisement she crows about being one of the team Randy has lead for years representing Chevron in its long-running, $19 billion war on indigenous people in Ecuador, one of the worst environmental crimes ever perpetrated. I visited the Shuar of the Ecuadorian Amazon after my company, MathSoft went public in 1993. I was VP of Sales and Marketing. I worked for great people and I learned how to practice right livelihood. Yet in the rain forest, Shaman Tunduama helped me to experience reasons to live in addition to making money. Indigenous people in the Amazon will NEVER stop fighting Chevron. The author of the article in the link above describes
…the modus operandi of Mastro and the litigation team at Gibson Dunn. Mastro and his teammates brag to scandal-plagued corporations about their uncanny ability to mount “rescue” operations. (The motto of the firm: “When the law is in the way, we change the law.”)
All it takes is Big Money for Big Law to do the bidding of Big Oil and Big Taxi
Because I’m representing myself, I have limitless time and resources to fight Randy, Anne and Andrew.
…however, if any of you have a bit more expertise, I sure would appreciate your help…