McCaffery’s Suit Survives First Inky Objections

Judge will allow case to go forward.

Seamus McCaffery can proceed with his lawsuit against the Philadelphia Inquirer, a judge ruled this week.

McCaffery, a Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice, is suing — along with his wife — over a 2013 Inky regarding legal “referral” fees she collected. That story led to rules changes at the court, and an FBI investigation, but McCaffery said he did nothing wrong.

The paper’s lawyers this week argued that editors and journalists have the job “to highlight what public officials are doing and let the public make its own determination on the conduct.” McCaffery’s lawyer once again pointed out that then-publisher Bob Hall questioned the worthiness of the story after it was published.

Senior Judge John Cleland gave the defendants 20 days to file a formal response to the particulars of McCaffery’s complaint. The deadline for discovery in the case is Nov. 30. [Legal Intelligencer]