BATON ROUGE, La. (Legal Newsline) – Louisiana Attorney
General Jeff Landry has canceled the outside legal contracts related to the State
of Louisiana, ex rel. James D. (“Buddy”) Caldwell v. Knauf Gips KG et al. lawsuit.
Landry has announced an internal audit of the services
performed by outside counsel to further evaluate the situation.
“The state has spent nearly $7 million on outside legal
counsel for the Chinese drywall litigation,” Landry said. “This use of
taxpayer’s hard-earned money comes to an end under my watch. While we continue
to advance the claim internally like we are doing with Deepwater Horizon, we
will also be determining what – if anything – the external lawyers provided to
advance Louisiana’s cause.”
The state filed a lawsuit in 2010 seeking to recover damages
caused by defective drywall imported after Hurricane Katrina. In pursuing the
lawsuit, the state use external counsel – which cost taxpayers millions. To
date, Louisiana has paid Perkins Coie $5,583,118.62; Shows, Cali & Walsh $490,452.67;
Usry, Weeks & Matthews $477,005.33; U.S. Health & Environmental
Liability Management $265,194.88; and the Theriot Group $101,705.55.