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Becker v. Spacedev

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


August 6, 2009

ROBERT E. BECKER, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SPACEDEV, INC. ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: M. James Lorenz United States District Court Judge

ORDER GRANTING MOTION FOR APPROVAL OF LEAD PLAINTIFF'S SELECTION OF LEAD AND LIAISON COUNSEL

In this putative securities class action, the firms of Rigrodsky & Long P.A. ("R&L") and Hulett Harper Stewart LLP ("HHS") filed a Motion for Approval of Lead Plaintiff's Selection of Lead and Liaison Counsel. No opposition has been filed. For the reasons stated below, the motion is GRANTED.

By order filed April 17, 2009, Robert E. Becker was appointed Lead Plaintiff for the class. Lead Plaintiff's selection of R&L and HHS was rejected at that time because of several discrepancies in Plaintiff's filings regarding his selection of counsel. (See order field Apr. 17, 2009.) Lead Plaintiff re-filed his motion for approval of his selection of lead and liaison counsel, and supported his request with additional information.

Pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 78u-4(a)(3)(B)(v), the lead plaintiff "shall, subject to the approval of the court, select and retain counsel to represent the class." In order to approve class counsel, the court must find that they comply with the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(g). Fed. Judicial Ctr, Managing Class Action Litig. at 4-5 (2005). Based on the declarations and representations made in support of Lead Plaintiff's initial motion (doc. no. 5) and the pending motion (doc. no. 14), the court finds that Lead Plaintiff's selection complies with Rule 23(g) requirements.

Lead Plaintiff retained three law firms in this matter, R&L as its Lead Counsel, HHS as Liaison Counsel, and The Rosen Law Firm ("Rosen") as additional counsel. Although Lead Plaintiff intends for Rosen to continue to represent him in this matter and support the other two law firms, he expressly did not seek approval of Rosen as lead or liaison counsel. While a litigant has a right to representation of his choice, the counsel are hereby forewarned that the court is not inclined to grant any attorneys' fees or costs for duplication of work among them.

For the reasons stated above, the motion is GRANTED. Lead Plaintiff's selection of Rigrodsky & Long, P.A. as Lead Counsel and his selection of Hulett Harper Stewart LLP as Liaison Counsel are hereby approved.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

HON. CATHY ANN BENCIVENGO UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

20090806

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