May 29, 2009, Detroit MI – The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan issued a ruling today denying Arctic Glacier’s motion to dismiss claims brought by former packaged ice sales executive Martin McNulty for violations of the Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”) and for tortious interference.
Mr. McNulty alleged that Arctic and other defendants fired and blacklisted him in retaliation for his refusal to participate in an antitrust conspiracy, and in retaliation for his cooperation with the FBI and DOJ in exposing the conspiracy.
In its ruling, the Court found that Mr. McNulty “has properly alleged the [RICO] predicate act of witness tampering against [Arctic executive Charles] Knowlton and Arctic Glacier, and witness retaliation against Arctic Glacier [and others].” The Court further stated that these alleged predicate acts were “the direct cause of [Mr. McNulty’s] inability to find employment in the packaged ice industry.” Under RICO, Mr. McNulty is entitled to treble damages and attorney fees if his suit is successful.
The Court also held that “Plaintiff has adequately pled a cause of action for tortious interference of prospective economic advantage against Arctic [Glacier].”
Kotchen & Low LLP looks forward to vindicating Mr. McNulty’s rights in the case and anticipates that the matter will go to trial in early 2010.
Related media coverage: Ruling Creates Cold, Hard Reality for Ice Company, Winnipeg Free Press (June 4, 2009)