Peter Vogel is a lawyer that was acting an as adjunct judge ("special master") in this case and close colleague of the senior district judge. Vogel and the Senior Judge blog together on a boutique website that blogs about Jeff's case . Vogel is also a colleague of Mr. Urbanik and Mr. Sherman, of whom Jeff had objected to fees in the bankruptcy case involving Jeff's corporation.
Vogel’s Appointment is Prohibited by Law
The district court appointed Peter Vogel as receiver, even though the law prohibited his appointment– 28 U.S.C. 958 mandates that a person employed by any judge of the United States may not at the same time be appointed a receiver. Further, as explained below, when it comes to Jeff Baron, Peter Vogel and his law firm Gardere, are not “an indifferent person” required of a receiver pursuant to established law. E.g., Atlantic Trust Co. v. Chapman, 208 US 360, 370 (1908). In fact, Peter Vogel is acting as an "anti-receiver"– instead of trying to preserve and conserve the receivership res as required by law, Peter Vogel is apparently actively maximizing ‘claims’ against Jeff. Peter Vogel and Mr. Sherman have apparently actively solicited more than a million dollars of new claims against Jeff Baron, and Peter Vogel is seeking liquidation of Jeff Baron’s Roth retirement IRA that by law is exempt from execution. Instead of seeking to negotiate and reduce the size of claims, It appears that Vogel is actively working to fabricate and expand claims against Jeff, presumably to self-justify billing yet more money.
Prior Allegations of Vogel's Abuse of Power
This is not the first case where Mr. Vogel has pocketed huge sums engaging in “questionable” practices. Not long ago, WFAA Channel 8 investigative reporter, Brett Shipp investigated Vogel’s dealings with the county commissioners of Collin County, Texas, in which Vogel and his Gardere firm were employed by multiple parties, in apparent violation of ethical rules, with conflicting interests, and wound up pocketing hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money attempting to thwart a government auditor. The auditor wanted to audit software pursuant to standards set by a committee that Vogel chaired. As if Mr. Vogel's apparent conflict of interests here were not enough, Vogel's firm also represented the company that sold this software to the county. Instead of allowing the audit as mandated by law, Vogel sued the auditor, with taxpayers footing Vogel's massive bill, to prevent the auditor from performing his duty to audit the software. The government auditor's representative was interviewed by WFAA News 8 and stated, "That is a conflict of interest". With the taxpayers footing the bill, Vogel and Gardere allegedly bullied and threatened the auditor with personal financial ruin, leading to his resignation. These stories can be found at the following locations: PegasusNews and WFAA .
Vogel's Billing Frenzy
Notably, The declared purpose of the receivership motion is to keep Jeff Baron from being able to hire lawyers. Thus, to fulfill its purpose of ensuring that Jeff Baron can never hire a lawyer, the receivership can never end. After 90 days of receivership, Peter Vogel and his firm have billed Jeff Baron just as the district judge authorized– over $1,000,000.00. . Peter Vogel, at this minute, is marching forward, billing daily in a billing frenzy, at a rate of almost $10,000.00 PER DAY .. The income to Peter Vogel and his law firm is staggering.
Prior Involvement with Jeff Baron
Before Peter Vogel was the special master judge, mediator, and receiver in the lawsuit, he and his law firm had a long history of involvement with Jeff Baron. The relationship began in 2001 when Jeff consulted with Mr. Vogel in anticipation of hiring him. Then, Vogel's firm sued Jeff and his company in numerous lawsuits– and were literally specialists in suing him (and Ondova). Vogel’s firm apparently developed this specialty in violation of their ethical duties, as explained below.
A purpose for Jeff's consultations with Vogel in 2001 was to defend Jeff in litigation regarding the company, Ondova. At that time, Jeff disclosed material that was expressly confidential and revealed the way domain names were acquired– with a view to Vogel defending a lawsuit pending at the time with respect to a disputed domain name. (Ex. I).
In 2003, Jeff shared more confidential information with another lawyer at Vogel's Gardere firm, again in confidence, and again with a view toward Vogel’s firm representing Jeff. Once again, material which as expressly confidential was disclosed to Vogel’s firm.
Then, in 2004 Jeff Baron found himself being sued by Vogel's firm on exactly the same type of claim with regard to which he had confidentially disclosed to Peter Vogel– a domain name dispute. In this dispute, Vogel's firm was adverse and represented Jeff’s opponent. (Emke v. Compana). In 2005 this happened again, with Vogel's firm suing Jeff over the same type of claim. (Rolfing Sports, Ex. I).
In 2006, this happened yet again. (FabJob, Inc). Once again, Vogel's firm sued on the same type of claim. Vogel's firm had became a specialist in suing Jeff or his company for alleged domain registration violations. More about this history is explained in the Motion for Reconsiderationbeginning on page 11.
Soliciting Claims against Jeff Baron
Vogel and Sherman have also been actively soliciting claims from others, raising great concerns– especially under an ex-parte receivership that is clearly prohibited by long standing legal principles. For example, Sherman has worked extensively to “advise” an individual, Joey Dauben, to submit a ‘claim’ against Jeff for the receiver to pay. That attempt is extremely alarming, as follows: The Dauben ‘claim’ would be for approximately $1,000,000.00 in damages. Joey Dauben had not previously raised a claim against Jeff Baron. The solicitation of the Dauben claim at first seems to make no sense. Upon further inquiry, it turns out that if the ‘claim’ is paid, the money won’t go to Mr. Dauben. The money will go to pay off a judgment was taken against Mr. Dauben’s company in 2009-2010 by Mr. Vogel’s firm, and about a million dollars is due on the judgment. If Mr. Dauben received money from the receiver, that could pay off the judgment. That judgment was taken by, and money from the judgment’s recovery may be due to be paid to– Peter Vogel’s law firm. Peter Vogel’s law firm would thus be a primary beneficiary of the newly created ‘claim’ and hundreds of thousands of A primary beneficiary of that judgment and the ‘claim’ against Jeff Baron the receiver and Sherman have attempted to create– is none other than Peter Vogel’s law firm, the plaintiff’s attorney in the lawsuit against Mr. Dauben’s company.
Additional information regarding Mr. Vogel's connection to this case can be found in this link to another article published on lawinjustice.com.