A judge on Monday slowed down Sierra Pacific Industries’ attempt to breathe life back into the government’s lawsuit against the timber giant over the cause of the 2007 Moonlight wildfire.
Despite the mountain of paper filed by the parties in the past six weeks, U.S. District Judge William B. Shubb told opposing counsel at a status hearing that the “threshold question” is whether there has been fraud perpetrated on the Sacramento federal court.
If not, Shubb declared, Sierra Pacific has no standing to reopen the suit, which was settled more than two years ago. A one-year statute of limitations prevents the company from claiming it was defrauded by the government. If a fraud by the government on the court can be shown, however, it would not be subject to such a restriction, the judge said.
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