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Takiguchi v. MRI International, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Nevada

January 10, 2018

SHIGE TAKIGUCHI, FUMI NONAKA, MITSUAKI TAKITA, TATSURO SAKAI, SHIZUKO ISHIMORI, YUKO NAKAMURA, MASAAKI MORIYA, HATSUNE HATANO, and HIDENAO TAKAMA, individually and on behalf of all others similarity situated, Plaintiff,
v.
MRI INTERNATIONAL, INC., EDWIN J. FUJINAGA, JUNZO SUZUKI, PAUL MUSASHI SUZUKI, LVT, INC., dba STERLING ESCROW, and DOES 1-500, Defendants.

          JAMES E. GIBBONS (pro hac vice) Cal. State Bar No. 130631 MANNING & KASS ELLROD, RAMIREZ, TRESTER LLP ROBERT W. COHEN (pro hac vice) Cal. State Bar No. 150310 MARIKO TAENAKA (pro hac vice) Cal. State Bar No. 273895 LAW OFFICES OF ROBERT W. COHEN, A.P.C. Attorneys for Plaintiffs

          MANNING & KASS ELLROD, RAMIREZ, TRESTER LLP JAMES E. GIBBONS STEVEN J. RENICK Attorneys for Plaintiffs

          LAW OFFICES OF ROBERT W. COHEN A Professional Corporation ROBERT W. COHEN MARIKO TAENAKA Attorneys for Plaintiffs HITZKE & FERRAN Erick Ferran Attorneys for Defendant MRI International, Inc. and Edwin Fujinaga

          ORDER AND STIPULATION FOR SECOND CONTINUANCE OF DEADLINE TO FILE MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY APPROVAL OF CLASS ACTION SETTLEMENT AS TO MRI INTERNATIONAL, INC. AND EDWIN FUJINAGA

         Plaintiffs Shige Takiguchi, et. al. and Defendants MRI International, Inc. (“MRI”) and Edwin Fujinaga (collectively the “Parties”) submit this stipulation for an order continuing the deadline for dispositive motions.

         WHEREAS, on November 17, 2017 the Court ordered Parties to file a motion for preliminary approval of class action settlement no later than December 11, 2017 (Dkt. 764);

         WHEREAS, the Parties reached a settlement in principle in September 2017 and have exchanged drafts of the settlement agreement (“Class Action Settlement Agreement”);

         WHEREAS, on November 17, 2017 Mr. Fujinaga raised, for the first time, his concern that, since a receiver has been appointed by the Court in the parallel U.S Securities and Exchange Commission's action against MRI and himself (SEC v. MRI International, Inc., USDC Nevada No. 2:13-cv-1658, Dkt. 226) (“SEC Action”), he believed that he may not be authorized to enter into any settlement on behalf of MRI or himself;

         WHEREAS, on November 18, 2017, the Court appointed receiver in the SEC Action, Robb Evans & Associates, confirmed its belief to plaintiff's counsel that Mr. Fujinaga was not authorized to enter into a settlement agreement with Plaintiffs and directed that Plaintiffs send a copy of the Class Action Settlement Agreement to the receiver's counsel, Lynch Law Practice;

         WHEREAS, on November 30, 2017, the Receiver declined to enter into the Class Action Settlement Agreement because he did not believe that the settlement would benefit the receivership estate;

         WHEREAS, on November 30, 2017, and December 7, 2017, Plaintiffs' counsel met and conferred with Receiver's counsel, Michael Lynch, Esq., explaining that the order appointing receiver specifically includes a carve-out provision exempting the present action from the Receiver's control and that, in any event, the settlement is in the best interest of all parties, including the receivership estate;

         WHEREAS, the Receiver maintains its position that he is unable to authorize the settlement absent direction from the Court;

         WHEREAS, on December 15, 2017, the Parties filed a joint motion in the SEC Action requesting direction from the Court, either that the Receiver lacks authority to direct the settlement in this action, or that Judge Mahan order the Receiver to enter into the Class Action Settlement Agreement;

         WHEREAS, on December 22, 2017, the Receiver filed a response to the joint motion;

         WHEREAS, on January 8, 2018, the Parties filed a reply conveying this Court's strong belief that it is in the best interest of all the ...


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