Judge: Falcon Foto, Porn Kings Must Litigate in Seattle

Michael Hayes
SEATTLE — A judge in the ongoing legal battle between Porn Kings and Falcon Foto has clarified the multistate copyright dispute, consolidating cases filed by both parties into a single action, which will be heard in U.S. District Court in Seattle.

According to the four-page order from U.S. Judge Ricardo Martinez, both parties filed suit about the same time, with Porn Kings, the DBA for Lucas Bradfield’s Noble Developments, seeking to be heard in a U.S. District Court in Los Angles.

In December, U.S. Judge James Otero dismissed the Porn Kings claim that sought to affirmatively establish that the company had not infringed on any Falcon Foto copyrights.

Otero’s ruling transferred the Porn King’s case to Seattle, where Falcon had already filed suit for copyright infringement.

The Falcon case had been assigned to judge Martinez, but the recently arrived Porn Kings claim had been given to Judge Robert Lasnik.

Martinez ruled to consolidate the two cases because both deal with the same set of facts and law. Martinez also concluded that hearing both cases together would not prejudice either party.

Falcon Foto attorney Robert Apgood told XBIZ the decision by Judge Martinez to consolidate the two cases in his court effectively ends a forum shopping attempt by Porn Kings.

“What this really means is that their case won’t be clogging up the court’s docket with what was really just forum shopping,” Apgood said. “We can now move forward with the case.”

Porn Kings attorney Venkat Balasubramani told XBIZ that he had no objection to consolidating the two cases.

“This isn’t a ruling on the merits, and it doesn’t effect the lawsuit,” Balasubramani said. “Once the case had been transferred to Seattle, we agreed that consolidation was best.”

Apgood said the case now moves into the discovery phase, which is expected to last take some time.