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Maybe it was the alleged death threat against Christopher Hanson’s client. Or possibly the alleged attempt at running Hanson off the road. Or it could have been both. Whatever it was, the Alameda attorney decided it would be wise if he and client Raymond Cote put some distance between themselves and two reportedly out-of-control defendants in a fraud case. Last year, Alameda County Superior Court Judge Wynne Carvill agreed, and ordered Lincoln Finley Jr. to stay at least 100 yards � the length of a football field � from Hanson’s home and office, and 100 yards from Cote. In addition, Finley’s wife, LaTonya, was ordered not to own or possess a firearm. On Tuesday, San Francisco’s First District Court of Appeal affirmed in an unpublished ruling, holding that there was “substantial evidence” that the Finleys became “hostile and threatening” when confronted with the legal issues spawned by a suit filed against them by Cote. “Given the Finleys’ admitted disdain for the legal proceedings initiated by respondents, along with the Finleys’ past behavior,” Justice Patricia Sepulveda wrote, “it is understandable why respondents would anticipate further threatening behavior.” Justices Ignazio Ruvolo and Maria Rivera concurred in the ruling, which involved three consolidated appeals. The troubles began soon after Hanson, a partner in the Hanson-Briggs Law Group, began investigating claims that led to the filing of a suit on Oct. 29, 2004, accusing the Finleys of defrauding Cote out of thousands of dollars invested in a number of real estate schemes. A few months before the suit was filed, but shortly after Cote had lost an unlawful detainer action against the Finleys, the couple allegedly paid a visit to Hanson’s office in late May or early June of 2004 while Hanson, Cote and another lawyer were discussing the sale of property. Hanson claims Lincoln Finley blew up and started screaming at Cote, trying to start a fight. According to Tuesday’s ruling, “Hanson testified it ‘was one of those “Come on and step outside. Let’s deal with this like men kind of thing.” And that’s just not something I was going to allow.’” Cote claims that LaTonya Finley later called him and said their dispute would end with him “lying in a pool of blood.” The next alleged encounter occurred in August 2004, Hanson claims, after LaTonya Finley lost a defamation suit against the lawyer in small claims court. The Finleys chased him down the street in their Jeep Cherokee after the hearing and tried to force his car off the road, Hanson contends. “At a traffic signal,” Justice Sepulveda wrote, “Mr. Finley made a gesture with his fingers to simulate a handgun firing at his head while he was smiling and looking directly at Hanson. Mr. Finley finally passed in front of Hanson’s car, ‘flipping [Hanson] off’ before driving onto the freeway at a high rate of speed.” The Finleys deny all of the allegations. The trial court took the charges seriously, however. Judge Carvill’s stay-away orders are effective until midnight on May 5, 2008. But it contains provisions allowing the Finleys to participate in the ongoing litigation without violating the injunctions. On Tuesday, the First District also dismissed allegations that the injunctions violate the Finleys’ rights to free speech. It also pointed out in a footnote that Hanson’s office was firebombed on Feb. 3, 2004, during the unlawful detainer proceedings, but there was no evidence the Finleys were responsible. Hanson was unavailable for comment at press time. The cases are Hanson-Briggs Law Group v. Finley, A110200, A110263 and A110270. LaTonya Finley responds: This is the Finleys’ response to the allegations of Raymond Cote and Christopher Hanson. Since the ruling of the court there has been factual evidence overlooked by the courts. Here are some examples: 1. Page 4 of 16, line 1-4 of the Settlement Conference Statement, Christopher Hanson makes the following statement, “There was a fire at the 64th Avenue property as well. This damage was insured. The insurance carrier paid two claims, $7,598 and $1,575. These monies were similarly converted by the Finleys, while they were � through Realty-World � “Managing” the property for Cote.” In web case RG04-182798 one may view as exhibit “M” ALLSTATE insurance checks, showing that all endorsements were made by Raymond Cote and deposit into Raymond Cote’s account for his own personal use. 2. Page 6, line 24 of Christopher Hanson’s declaration. “I left the building without incident and began walking towards my car. I observed Lincoln and Latonya Finley walking towards their automobile. I waited a sufficient period of time allow the Finley’s to depart the vicinity before I drove to my office.” Again, in the web case one may view as exhibit “H” a map of the court house. As you read the events that Christopher Hanson’s make in his declaration, a different statement was made in the court. Page 7, line 19-25 of Christopher Hanson’s declaration the following statement was made, “Lincoln Finley again drove his car along side mine while traveling down 6th Street. I could see that he was screaming at me in an enraged manner. I was concerned that he was going to attempt to force my vehicle from the roadway or intentionally cause a collision. I also feared that he was going to attempt a physically confrontation once he forced my vehicle to a stop either from a collision or off the roadway. I was able to safely evade Lincoln Finley’s reckless maneuvers.” However in the Transcript (Page 41-42, line 20-28, 1-18, Christopher make a different statement. Further testimony of Christopher Hanson stated that he was forced into the lane of oncoming traffic (page 57-58, line 20-28, 1-28). Hanson continued to contradict himself throughout his testimony. Further evidence of the truth can be found at the Alameda county superior court domain web case RG04-182798. Also a petition for review has been filed at the Supreme Court with the exhibits of the false allegations that has damage the Finleys’ reputations. The other three cases information can also be found there as well AG05204479, AG05204457, RG05204461.

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