Three months after a Baton Rouge judge dismissed a former Livingston Parish contractor's defamation and malicious prosecution lawsuit against the state Office of Inspector General, that same judge is now allowing an amended suit to go forward.
State District Judge Mike Caldwell on Monday rejected a request from Inspector General Stephen Street, his office and two of the office's former investigators to throw out what their attorneys call a baseless suit.
Contractor Corey Delahoussaye filed his initial suit in February, but Caldwell ruled in July that it didn't state a legal cause of action against the defendants.
A former Livingston Parish contractor's defamation and malicious prosecution lawsuit against…
His amended suit in the 19th Judicial District Court alleges defamation, invasion of privacy, malicious prosecution and negligence, among other things.
"Just another step in Mr. Delahoussaye's effort to hold the OIG responsible for its part in subjecting Corey to unwarranted charges of criminal conduct," his attorney, Al Robert Jr., said Tuesday of Caldwell's latest ruling. "We will continue to move forward with the suit."
Preston Castille Jr., who represents the OIG and Street and the other defendants, said the state intends to once again ask the judge to throw out delaHoussaye's suit.
"Judge Caldwell indicated that the state may be able to dismiss Mr. Delahoussaye's claims at some later point," Castille said.
Delahoussaye was charged by the 21st Judicial District Attorney's Office in 2013 with numerous counts of filing false public records and theft based on roughly $25,000 of "questionable" billing out of the $2.3 million that his firm, C-Del Inc., charged the parish for wetlands mitigation and other work in the wake of Hurricane Gustav in 2008.
A former Livingston Parish contractor and whistleblower previously charged with overbilling …
Prosecutors alleged he billed for work when he was golfing, attending his children's swim competitions, working out and tanning at a gym, and visiting a Baton Rouge anti-aging clinic.
But 21st Judicial District Judge Brenda Ricks in January suppressed all of the inspector general's evidence underlying the charges. The judge ruled the inspector general lacked authority to investigate delaHoussaye or his company and improperly used a subpoena to obtain medical records that should have been requested through a search warrant.
LIVINGSTON — A state court judge again suppressed all the prosecution’s evidence in a crimin…
In documents filed in Baton Rouge state court after delaHoussaye amended his lawsuit, Robert claims the OIG's "unauthorized and incompetent investigation led him to be wrongfully accused of stealing public funds and dragged through the media as an alleged felon."
Castille counters in court documents that the OIG "maintains that its investigation was indeed conducted for a legitimate and uninterested purpose and in accordance with Louisiana law."
"The bottom line is that the OIG disagrees with (delaHoussaye) ... and remains convinced that it absolutely had the jurisdiction and authority to investigate (his) alleged misconduct -- especially after it was asked to do so by the Attorney General's Office," he wrote. "This well-founded disagreement in no way makes the OIG negligent, in bad faith, or otherwise liable to (him)."