Crusading company seeks justice from 'junk fax' senders

Amelia Flood Jun. 24, 2009, 4:18am

No stranger to class action battles, plaintiff Locklear Electric of Wood River is going after more companies over what it claims are faxes that violate federal telephone and privacy laws.

In less than five years, Locklear has filed seven "junk fax" class actions, claiming violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

The company's most recent suits were filed June 9 in Madison County Circuit Court. The two suits are nearly identical. One names a realtor and the other a chiropractor.

Its previous suits claim similar violations. Of four cases filed in 2005, one was dismissed, one settled and another ended in a judgment. The remaining 2005 class action suit remains pending, in although no action has been taken in the case since 2007.

Locklear did not file any fax-related suits for three years after its first spate. It resumed seeking damages for the loss of toner, ink, and privacy it claimed the faxes caused, with a class action filed in 2008. That case remains before Madison County Circuit Judge Andy Matoesian. It was continued on May 27, 2009.

Lawyers for Locklear have asked Madison County Circuit Judge Dennis Ruth for class certification in its recent suit against Taylorville Chiropractic Clinic, LLC.

Madison County Circuit Judge Barbara Crowder presides over Locklear's new action against Theodore and Norma Lay of the Ted Lay Real Estate Agency.

In the two most recent suits, Locklear is represented by Robert Sprague. Brian Wanca has also filed appearances on Locklear's behalf in both matters.

The company seeks $75,000 in damages for each suit and costs. It is asking for the class to be compensated $500 per violation of the federal law.

The 2009 cases are Madison case number 09-L-605 for the Locklear vs. Lay and 09-L-606 for Locklear vs. Taylorville.

The 2005 case numbers include 05-L-226, 05-L-376, 05-L-724, and 05-L-859.

The 2008 case was case number 08-L-1131.

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