Lawsuit By Ousted Former Bel-Air Association Leaders Moved From Downtown L.A. To Santa Monica
Posted: Tuesday, April 19, 2016 – 3:21 PM
A new lawsuit filed by ousted former Bel-Air Association (BAA) leaders against the BAA’s newly-elected leadership hit a roadblock this week when an L.A. Superior Court judge ordered the case be returned from downtown Los Angeles to the Santa Monica Courthouse.
After having his request for a Temporary Restraining Order denied last month, former BAA President Ron Hudson dismissed a suit a filed in West L.A. that aimed to restore the power that was removed from him by Bel-Air voters in a 155-to-1 vote at a March 17 special meeting.
Days after that dismissal, former BAA legal counsel Bruce Kuyper filed a similar suit in downtown L.A., presumably hoping for a more favorable outcome in front of a judge far removed from the West L.A. landscape.
Tuesday, it was decided that because it has been deemed related to Hudson’s original case, the matter would be moved back to West L.A. Similarly, a May 12 hearing on Kuyper’s complaint has been vacated.
A new date of April 26 at 8:30 a.m. in the Santa Monica Courthouse has been set for a status conference on how Kuyper’s case should proceed.
Bel-Air Association member Fred Rosen said the courts are “more than smart enough” to understand the tactic, which he referred to as “judge shopping.”
“Ron, Bruce, Marv Elkin and Jeff Kaplan have been dumping on this community for years, they talk about protecting the community but the community doesn’t want them,” Rosen said. “It wasn’t until recently that we understood Jeff had been put back on the board in January, and that Mona Elkin had been removed. It’s again another example of a lack of transparency and the disdain these four hold for the community.”
Kuyper admitted that Hudson’s initial lawsuit was likely the reason for the case being moved back to West L.A.
“Presumably it was transferred as a result of the notice of related case that we filed with the complaint that initiated the lawsuit on April 5,” Kuyper told The Courier. “We don’t expect that this will affect the case substantively moving forward.”