More than two years after being filed in federal court, a lawsuit over leaked emails from Gov. Susana Martinez’s 2010 campaign account was dismissed with prejudice Monday. Attorneys on both sides filed the motion to dismiss, which likely puts the issue to rest. “It’s dismissed with prejudice,” Bruce Wetherbee, one of the defendants in the lawsuit, told NM Political Report. “End of story.”
Dismissed with prejudice means that the lawsuit cannot be re-filed in court. Wetherbee worked with Independent Source PAC when the liberal political action committee publicly released some leaked emails from Martinez administration staffers and allies in 2012.
A witness in a federal civil trial regarding leaked emails from Gov. Susana Martinez will not have to hand over emails she exchanged with a local news reporter. United States Magistrate Judge Stephan M. Vidmar ruled Monday that emails between Santa Fe New Mexican reporter Justin Horwath and former Martinez aide Anissa Ford will not be part of the legal discovery process in a civil case*. Individuals with connections to Martinez accused four individuals of illegally intercepting and disseminating emails from personal email accounts of Martinez staffers. At the hearing, Pat Rogers, a Republican lobbyist and one of the lawyers for the plaintiffs, asked the court to order email communications between Horwath and Ford be made available to him and his legal team. Rogers is a Republican National Committeeman in the state and has close ties to the governor.
Three defendants in a federal lawsuit are fighting back in the latest development of an ongoing scandal involving leaked emails from the campaign account of Gov. Susana Martinez. In answers filed earlier this month, state Democratic Party Chairman Sam Bregman and private investigator Michael Corwin, who ran the Martinez-critical Independent Source PAC, deny that they illegally “hijacked” emails from the governor’s campaign account. Jamie Estrada, who briefly served as Martinez’ campaign manager in 2009 and is now serving time in federal prison after admitting to intercepting campaign emails in a plea deal last year, also filed an answer denying that he caused damages to the plaintiffs. The controversy dates back to the summer of 2012, when emails from the governor’s campaign account began leaking to the media. Scores of leaked emails showed top lobbyists communicating with governor’s office staffers about a controversial Albuquerque racino deal before the decision, among other things.