The California Supreme Court has denied a petition to review an asbestos liability case in which a Los Angeles judge blasted the plaintiff’s firm, Waters & Kraus, for engaging in a “type of judicially sanctioned extortion.”

The case involves a Los Angeles man who died of mesothelioma in December 2007. Six months before his death, the man was deposed in Texas, where the case was first filed. Lawyers for one of the defendants, Crane Co., an industrial product manufacturer, sought to exclude the man’s deposition because it was insufficient to meet the stricter burden for obtaining summary judgment in California, where the case had been re-filed.

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