As a successful businessperson in the tech industry, William G. Moore never anticipated that he would become the main character in a 23-year run of litigation. Here, here and here are just a handful of rulings in that case. The latter represents a decision from the U.S. Supreme Court. Yes, SCOTUS.
The good news is that, if he wins the current jury trial, his long crusade for justice could reform the legal system, just as Dickens' novel had.
As Zoe Tillman reports in The National Law Journal, Moore filed his lawsuit in 1991. He contended:
" ... federal agents targeted him in retaliation for speaking out against U.S. Postal Service business decisions ... His lawsuit survived repeated attacks by the U.S. Department of Justice as it traveled to and from the U.S. Supreme Court."
Here is the NLJ coverage.
Along the way, Moore also lost his health, career, and reputation in the tech industry. He had been Chief Executive Officer of Recognition Equipment. Exercising his First Amendment right of freedom of expression, he disagreed with a U.S. Postal Service (USPS) strategic decision. Together the USPS and the Department of Justice allegedly "went after" Moore. Here are more details.
Closing arguments in the jury trial will probably take place this week. Moore is seeking $280 million in compensatory damages from the government. Also, he is seeking punitive damages.
What reforms could happen with a Moore win?
Huge ones. Those would include:
Prosecutors will be held accountable for malicious and retaliatory motives.
No public service like the USPS and none of its personnel will be given special treatment in the U.S. system of justice.
No private citizen will be afraid to voice criticism of any entity related to the U.S. government.
The U.S. legal system will process in a timely manner alleged harm done as a result of exercising First Amendment rights.
Moore is Everyman and Everywoman. We can open our mouths and live to regret it for decades, losing everything. In the doctoral program at the University of Michigan I exercised my First Amendment rights to support Affirmative Action. I was terminated from a part-time job. Eventually through collective bargaining I got the job back. I was lucky. Others weren't. That's when my interest in law began.