Chatham Asset Management just sent Pando this seven page legal threat, written by Marty “Mad Dog” Singer


singersmLast week Pando published the first in a series of stories by David Sirota examining proposed contracts for the handling of New Jersey public pension funds. As we reported at the time, one of the firms mentioned in the series— Chatham Asset Management — threatened to sue Sirota, and Pando, over our investigation, even before we had published our story mentioning them.

The company also tried to undercut our reporting on them by leaking the details to Fortune’s Dan Primack ahead of publication. More bizarre still, on Tuesday morning, an article appeared in the National Enquirer, attacking Sirota personally, and attempting to portray him as “looney” and “unhinged”.

Bluntly put: things got ugly quickly.

Yesterday afternoon, they got uglier still. A lawyer acting for Chatham and the firm’s principal, Anthony Melchiorre, sent us a seven-page legal threat, demanding that we delete all of our coverage of Chatham and Melchiorre or face a “multimillion dollar liability.”

Curiously, Chatham and Melchiorre are represented by Marty Singer, an entertainment lawyer who has previously represented celebrities like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jean Claude Van Damme. An LA Magazine article, republished on Singer’s own website, explains how Singer’s “ability to make prying journalists back off” earned him the nickname “Mad Dog.

In accordance with Pando’s policy of publishing all legal threats we receive, we have embedded Singer’s entire letter to Pando and Sirota below. As befits an entertainment lawyer, it makes for highly entertaining reading. What it doesn’t appear to do is dispute the basis facts in Pando’s reporting.

Our attorney will respond to Singer soon. Needless to say, we stand by our reporting. Pando’s investigation into Governor Chris Christie’s use of New Jersey public pension money continues.

Anthony Melchiorre and Chatham Asset Management Legal Letter by pandoeditorial

[Marty Singer photo credit: Getty]



Actor John R. Morales Who Portrayed ‘McGruff the Crime Dog’ Sentenced To 16 Years In Jail On Drug And Weapons Charges


Actor John R. Morales who was arrested in 2011 for possession of 1,000 marijuana plants, 27 weapons and 9,000 rounds of ammunition has accepted a plea deal.  The actor who dressed up as McGruff the Crime Dog and visited schools to teach children about the danger of drugs will spend the next 16 years in prison.  Once the story broke, thousands took to Twitter to share their opinions.  Many focused on the irony that an actor that portrayed a crime fighting dog was arrested for committing a crime while others asked “what is the world coming to?”  Below is a look at some of the reactions.

For those that don’t remember McGruff the Crime Dog from the ’80s, here is a look at one of his vintage TV commercials.

What was your reaction when you first heard the news?

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