AUGUST 14, 2023, FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA, in addition to ongoing litigation against Heath Ritenour and Insurance Office of America in Federal Court seeking damages for, among other claims, allegations of Non-Criminal Civil Remedies under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”), on July 10, 2023, in a separate lawsuit pending in State Court in Broward County, Plaintiff Louis Spagnuolo (“Spagnuolo”) filed an Amended Complaint against Heath Ritenour (“Heath”) and Insurance Office of America (“IOA”) in Broward Circuit Court alleging claims of Defamation Per Se and Abuse of Process. The Lawsuit’s Court Docket filed pleadings and motions can be located at www.browardclerk.org searching assigned Case Number CACE23000555 (“Broward Lawsuit”).
The Broward Lawsuit’s Amended Complaint alleges in part that Heath and IOA filed a “frivolous lawsuit” in Seminole County Circuit Court against Spagnuolo and thereafter “when on to use the publicly filed lawsuit to engage in out of court private communications with third parties in which they made additional false statements to discredit Spagnuolo.” While Spagnuolo has filed a Motion to Dismiss the Seminole Lawsuit pursuant Florida Statute § 786.295 Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation Prohibited (“Florida’s Anti-SLAPP Law”) arguing in part that that lawsuit was brought “in clear retaliation for Spagnuolo filing a lawsuit against IOA the year before”, that motion remains pending.
The text of Florida’s Anti-SLAPP lawsuit can be found at: http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0700-0799/0768/Sections/0768.295.html
In the Broward Lawsuit, the July 2023 Amended Complaint alleges further that: “Defendants IOA and Heath further mis-used the [“Seminole Lawsuit”] … and orders from [that case] to further defame Spagnuolo by implying inferences from that legal proceeding to enforce the defamatory and harmful statements made about Spagnuolo.”
At Paragraph 84 of the Broward Lawsuit’s Amended Complaint, it is alleged that: “statements were published orally and/or in writing to various individuals including but not limited to Daniel Mahalic, Pat Kurz, Max McKay, Rick Neyman, Dan Ricker, Nathan Brainard, Jeremy Burr, Charlie Boornazian, Danny Anderson, Jeff Lagos, Rob Motley, John Tenuto, Chris Labrecque, Bruce Eades, Michael Coleman, John Thurman, Bill Rush, Andrew Lockhart, Don Poag, Lee Hanna, Nyea Sturman, Charlie Freeman, Theresa Fenwick, and Davis Anderson.”
In this Announcement, Farrow Law Firm is seeking information as to Heath or IOA’s publication of statements related to Spagnuolo to other individuals and entities, and/or information as to the character and reputations of Heath Ritenour or Insurance Office of America. Please direct communications to firstname.lastname@example.org. All communications will remain confidential unless otherwise discoverable/permitted by federal or state law, rules of procedure, evidence or Court order.
***THIS IS NOT A LAWYER ADVERTISEMENT OR SOLICITATION***
This Announcement is for informational purposes only and is not a solicitation for any individual having any alleged claims against any of the Defendants named above and, should we receive a request for representation to prosecute or defend claims as to these Defendants, Farrow Law will decline the same and this also applies to anyone seeking representation by the firm based upon this announcement release. The Broward Lawsuit has not gone to trial, and nothing herein is intended to suggest that any allegation or argument presented has been established in court.
* The individuals named in Paragraph 84 of the Amended Complaint in Broward State Court are not Defendants in the Lawsuit, nor does the Amended Complaint allege, imply or suggest that they engaged in any wrongful conduct whatsoever and whether or not these individuals did in fact receive published statements has yet to be established in a court of law.
Founder Farrow Law Firm