I spoke tonight with Casey Wallace, a lawyer at a prominent Texas law firm that filed a lawsuit Monday alleging that one of Senator Norm Coleman’s campaign donors, Nasser Kazeminy, had aided the senator by hiring a firm where his wife worked. The lawsuit was filed against Kazeminy on behalf of Paul McKim, the founder and a minority shareholder of a firm called Deep Marine Technologies.
The lawsuit alleges:
In March 2007, Kazeminy began ordering the payment of corporate funds to companies and individuals who tendered no goods or services to DMT for the stated purpose of trying to financially assist United States Senator Norm Coleman of Minnesota.…Kazeminy told Mr. McKim that he [Kazeminy] would make sure there was paperwork to make it appear as though the payments were made in connection with the legitimate transations, explaining further that Senator Coleman’s wife, Laurie, worked for the Hays Companies, an insurance broker in Minneapolis, and that the payments could be made to Hays for insurance.
Wallace told me:
The allegations in the lawsuit are backed up with specifics. You can see that we had information and documents to back it up. We’re not pulling it out of thin air.
Before we filed the lawsuit, other minority shareholders filed a claim asserting many of the same things. Our firm did an investigation and we determined that Mr. McKim was wronged.
We didn’t allege that Norm Coleman did anything wrong. We didn’t sue him or his wife or the Hays Companies. The wrongs were done to the company [DMT] and to the minority shareholders.
The lawsuit was filed Monday and it started the engines for settlement negotiations. To show our good faith, we dismissed the lawsuit. The settlement negotiations broke down and we re-filed the lawsuit today.
Senator Coleman has vehemently denied the allegations of the lawsuit. I was unable to reach Kazeminy for comment, and previous attempts to reach Kazeminy have been unsuccessful.