Citibank Drops Suit Against DA Craig Watkins, Who Will Agree Not to Sue Them Either

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Last week was a bit embarrassing for Craig Watkins as his personal debt to Citibank became a public matter when The Dallas Morning News reported that he owed more than $15,000 in credit card bills, the latest in a history of financial whoopsies. The district attorney explained to Unfair Park that he took a significant salary cut when he was elected to public office and that his finances caught up with him. He said the matter would soon be resolved -- and it almost is, pending his signature on an agreement between Watkins and the bank.

The proposed aragement essentially boils down to this: I won't sue you if you don't sue me.

Citibank filed a non-suit that puts the case to rest, and the bank will automatically deduct monthly payments from Watkins's bank account. As long as his account stays on the positive side of the ledger, he stays in the clear as this matter is concerned. Citibank's notice of non-suit reads, "Plaintiff and Defendant previously entered into a settlement agreement concerning the subject matter of this lawsuit, and wish to continue under their prior settlement agreement."

So, it's business as usual after a blip of a public spectacle for which Watkins might have considered suing Citibank, except that an addendum to the original settlement agreement stipulates that he "releases and discharges" the bank "from all claims of any kind" related to this matter. He hasn't signed the addendum yet, but tells Unfair Park he plans to.

"I've pretty much decided I'm going to sign it just to put it behind me," he says.

The suit, Watkins says, arose from a mistake that occurred when Citibank sold some of its debt and lost track of the repayment plan the parties had arranged. He calls the whole mess "a distraction," and one that he's glad to put to rest.


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5 comments
Staff Iran-Conoco
Staff Iran-Conoco

What a clever way to launder bribes to public "law enforcement" officials. A secret and unaudited agreement between a bank on the government dole, and a financially and ethically bankrupt public official in a position to abuse "prosecutorial discretion" for the selective non-prosecution of the bank's financial crimes. This kind of secret transactions with public officials should be carefully audited by the FBI to make sure that Citibank and Watkins are not allowed to later trade Citibank's forgiveness of Watkins' debt for Watkins' willful abuses of  "prosecutorial discretion" in selective non-prosecution of Citibank's lawyer-lobbyers (lawbyers).

Watkins has already begun to pay the "debts" he owes the lawbyers who promoted him to the office he holds by kicking back lucrative 25% contingency-fee contracts on Dallas County's legal claim assets in the MERS litigation to celebrity-lawbyers like the, in her own words, "filthy rich" Lisa A. Blumenthal Baron ("Blue") and Stephen F. Malouf for work Watkins is paid to do. In this instance, Watkins is willfully breaching the duty he owes Dallas County with the obvious objective of unjustly enriching his cronies Blue and Malouf.

U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña should establish as zero-tolerance policy for the public corruption that has become commonplace in North Texas by thoroughly investigating citizen complaints like this and seeking restitution, pursuant to the Crime Victims Rights Act (18 U.S.C. § 3771) from both guilty public officials and lawbyers who aid and abet these crimes.

Thelisma Partridge
Thelisma Partridge

Not being versed in delinquent debt agreements, what grounds would Watkins have to sue Citibank?

NewsDog
NewsDog

Leslie,Do you, or Robert, have any update on Watkins's lawsuit against MERS and all the mortgage companies for not recording Assignments is going? Or did someone finally explain the law to the DA?  

Phelps
Phelps

That's not really a blip.  It's boilerplate.  Exchanging releases is a standard part of any settlement.

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