Winstead Trial Lawyers Win Dismissal in Federal and State Courts in Baseless Short-and-Distort Case

DALLAS–()–Winstead PC, a leading national law firm, today announced that its client, Sabrepoint Capital Management, a Dallas-based hedge fund, was successful in both having a case brought by Farmland Partners, Inc. (NYSE: FPI), dismissed and having the court grant a motion for summary judgment.

“This was a big win for our client in a case that should never have been filed. Our client was not responsible for the Seeking Alpha article or the allegations it made, which was the original source of the litigation,” said Toby Galloway, a Winstead shareholder and Co-Chair of the Securities Litigation & Enforcement Group.

“This was a complex case that involved the federal courts in Colorado and Texas and a state court in Texas. Our client has won at every stage of this case. Sabrepoint did not defame anyone. If anything, it was itself the victim of defamation,” added Mr. Galloway.

The details of the case are as follows:

  • Farmland Partners, Inc. (FPI) was the subject of an article on the website Seeking Alpha.
  • FPI sued the author of the Seeking Alpha article in Colorado.
  • FPI later added Winstead’s client Sabrepoint Capital as a defendant, and named two of its executives, asserting various claims all based on the allegedly defamatory article.
  • Sabrepoint moved to dismiss the Colorado case for lack of personal jurisdiction. The court agreed and found that Sabrepoint was not responsible for the Seeking Alpha article, did not conspire with the author, and the author was not Sabrepoint’s agent.[1]
  • FPI then sued Sabrepoint in federal court in Dallas, only to have its complaint dismissed for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction.
  • FPI then refiled in state court in Dallas County.[2]
  • Sabrepoint moved for summary judgment based on collateral estoppel, arguing that the factual issues were already decided against FPI in Colorado.
  • Sabrepoint also moved to dismiss the case under the Texas Citizens Participation Act, arguing that the Colorado court had already determined that the article was not attributable to Sabrepoint.
  • Following a November 12, 2021 hearing, the court agreed with Sabrepoint and granted the motion to dismiss and the motion for summary judgment.
  • The Texas Citizens Participation Act entitles Sabrepoint to recover its attorney fees.

The Winstead team that represented Sabrepoint Capital included Toby Galloway, Anneke Cronje and Jamie Lacy, with support from Wendy Kay.

[1] See Farmland Partners, Inc. v. Rota Fortunae et al, Cause No. 1:18-cv-02351-RBJ filed in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado. The Court’s order dismissing Sabrepoint was entered on February 26, 2021 and can be located at Dkt. #206.

[2] See Farmland Partners Inc. v. First Sabrepoint Capital Management, LP, et al, Cause No. DC-21-08643 filed in the 191st Judicial District Court of Dallas County, Texas.

About Winstead

Winstead PC is a national business law firm with nearly 300 attorneys who serve as trusted advisors to emerging, mid-market and large companies, both public and private. The Winstead team provides a range of core legal services that are critical to our clients achieving their business goals. Winstead’s business transactions and litigation practices serve key industries including airlines, financial services, healthcare, higher education, investment management/private funds, life sciences, real estate and sports business & media.

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