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Money tightens even in the world of Divorce…for some!

What is one of the toughest things a dentist has to deal with? Getting Paid! And it would seem to be the case at times for the Los Angeles Divorce Lawyers community too. ( Sometimes you take a looser client whose hubby is loaded or the looser sperm donor who banged a starlit and you get the court to order the ‘Rich Victim’ to pay all the legal fees) The later has worked well for lawyers such as Mark Kaplan who is now the principal I understand. It used to be Kaplan and whats his name but is now just ‘Kaplan’. This behavior is not unique to Mr. Kaplan by no means and is a perfectly legal practice and at times a gamble…BUT, if you know how to play and when to approach the court….it pays off better than any jackpot you could ever imagine! Is it a scam, no it is ‘playing’ the system….a little like ‘miners’ counsel….at times it is a total scam, my opinion.

I am guessing that Mr. Fishbein, lawyer is doing very well. Gary’s sperm donor client ( Halle Berry’s X ) has no money to speak of, Halle ‘big bucks’ Berry has loads of the stuff! And will be paying for all of if not most of her ‘mistakes’ legal fees. This is the case of were the position of Ms. Berry is that she needs to take ‘Their’ child to France….were it is safe! LMAO Maybe someone better warn Ms. Berry of the ‘Mulsim Factor’. There is some serious anger brewing as to a recent ‘cartoon’ of the Prophet Mohammed ( last 48 hours ) in “ Charlie Hebdo “….not sure how safe it is going to be for an American Actress. My professional opinion is that she and her child would be serious targets of extremist.

A large valley DIVORCE firm has laid off a few lawyers as well as support staff. Not easy running with the big boys…..( this same firm in the last several months has called my office no less than 3 times asking the “ How Much “ question and has been removed from We are a family run service and being family owned and operated we dont have the luxury of “ laying people off “……WE BILL AT $395.00 PER HOUR PLUS ANY AND ALL COSTS….and again, we too are apart of this mess called DIVORCE. All we want to do is to live like the ‘Fat Cats’ who live like kings, that is all no less and no more.

The former blockbuster firm of ‘Philips, #%&*, @#$*, Lerner ‘ can now promote their firm on a postage stamp. Philips Lerner, this firm still has a nice address, well sorta, it is now as much a player in the world of divorce as the guys in the basement washing cars. However, dont count Stacy out, what she lacks in courtroom presence she certainly makes up in marketing skills.

The word around the courthouse is that a mega firm needs to be careful, as the edge appears nearer and nearer? Hmmm, I hope some of you have checked your parachutes, as for some, when the time comes you will be crashing to the pavement as you attempt to leap to a new career. And for a few you, you will be fine as we here at will always have your backs. Now I am just saying, and for some of you, I will be rolling around laughing as you bounce around, as only I can……..just remember all of my other predictions, SPOT ON! Johnfucious say, ‘ be careful as you kick asses on whey up…you may have to kiss dem asses on dah whey down.’

Well the girls at Meyer, Olson, Lowy & Meyers are just kicking ass, others maybe laying off, Ms. Meyers is hiring. M.O.L.M. appears to be the go to firm for the rich and powerful. Interesting thing is that M.O.L.M. keeps quiet and protect their clients privacy, never a firm to show boat. Just a matter of time before “ The” Helfend takes the other half of the 14th floor!!! And did you happen to notice that Ms. Meyer’s shoe collection seems to be expanding too? Congrats to all at M.O.L.M., it is not easy to build a successful and powerful law practice in these times.

Chris Melcher

Another interesting find is Christopher C. Melcher, Lawyer, Walzer & Melcher. Upon meeting this guy the other day I found his ‘all day’
shoes interesting. These are shoes that are not as charming as let say Peter Lauzon’s ‘Pradas’, ( I often wonder if Prada makes that style for men too ) But they are I guess practical…..and they look comfy.
Melcher was fast and furious in his attempt to defend his ‘pervert’ client, and he did try, much to the dismay of those of us who had to sit and listen.
At times it almost looked as if Judge Marc Marmaro wanted to slide under his bench….it was not easy to listen to……( Chris’s client likes showers )
BUT! Still an attorney that has some great verbal skills and speaks well and had my attention. Melcher is a scrapper and you can tell….he grabs the ring and holds on. ( remember, keeping my attention is not easy ) If you are looking for a ‘tough’ lawyer in the valley give Christopher a call, 818-591-3700 or his cell 818-620-8312 …. I would give this guy a shot, 21700 Oxnard Street, suite 2080, Woodland Hills, Calif. 91367, for that if you are looking for a DIVORCE lawyer period, give Chris a call………His practice is successful and he is not laying anyone off….for Chris Melcher things are good ‘in the valley’.

Yepremyan Murder Trial Under Way

Mike Yepremyan was murdered November 2009 and the trial began just a few weeks ago June 2012. The jury selection is always one of the more uninteresting aspects of the process, “Select a Jury.” Let me just say this for the defendants, how the lawyers select a jury can be a crap shoot. On many real big high profile cases there are “specialists” who help with the process. These experts will look at the shoes, shined not shined, the hair, all kind of mannerisms to try and pick the most favorable. Little like how I pick peaches at the market, all by hand!

On the Yepremyan murder case it was the lawyers, Michael Levin, Esq. Alex Kessel, Esq., Levin is representing Zareh Manjikian and Kessel is representing Vahag Jurian. Also present every day is Hovic Dzhuryan and his sister Kat Vardanian, Anthony Brooklier is representing Kat and George Mgdesyan is representing Hovic. Did either Brooklier or Mgdesyan assist in the jury selection? I am not sure, all of these guys are well trained and respected for their work as “Get me off the hook” go to guys. The biggest name in the bunch of course is Anthony Brooklier, one of the biggest names in defense in So. Cal. right up there with Harland Braun, Esq. Kessel and Levin are very good at their craft also, Mgdesyan, I have never heard of until this trial.

I met with Brooklier with one of the defendants in the Anna Nicole Smith trial and after a great lunch of Spaghetti and Meatballs my client “flew the coop.” I was done with her and Brooklier was not retained, I still see that as a big mistake…welcome to my world of making suggestions.

Judge Gregory A. Dohi of the Los Angeles Superior Court is presiding, Dept. E. Judge Dohi has only been a judge since being appointed August 29, 2007. Prior to that he attended a mid level university back East, Harvard!! And then went to Boalt Hall School of Law, one thing we can say is that this guy has educational credentials in the highest categories of law. Judge Dohi was admitted to the bar in 1991 and joined the District Attorney’s office as a prosecutor. Judge Dohi handled the pre-lim of Robert Blake 2.26.2003 after he supposedly “whacked” his wife after a nice Italian dinner at Vittello’s in Studio City. I wonder if they had Meatballs?

When Judge Dohi is not siting on the bench he is a professor at Southwestern School of Law. His honor ran for his bench seat in 2010 and won the election, no one else it appears ran against him, this is often the case for sitting judges. Judge Dohi also sent Jodie Foster’s father to prison for 5 years for scamming home owners. Not bad, Blake, Foster, welcome to being a jurist in Southern California.

The only issue that I have is that with this education, with this employment background he has to know the law backwards and forwards. On paper this guy does not look like he would be easy to sell a bridge to…we will see.

Ani and Art Yepremyan

Some feathers are being ruffled as to having Mike Yepremyan’s parents, Artak and Ani sit outside the courtroom while certain witnesses testify. Former friends of Mike’s that both of the parents had spoken to after the murder of their son. Is this any kind of violation of “victims rights?” I am not sure. What I am hearing and understanding, is a Judge not wanting to make any mistakes that, in the event of a conviction, will start the appeal process. If there are convictions and there is any money left certainly there will be an appeal, that is fairly common in cases like this.

Remember, I promised to do all I could to make this story known around the world. I got it in the Los Angeles Times, Column One front page above the crease, we discussed it throughout the internet, all of the local news channels and the icing on the cake for me is Luce Villareal , taping for what will be a segment on DATELINE. If you will, prior to my participation in this case this was a “two line story” on the L.A. Times webpage…not anymore!

I am not positive as I have not been served yet with a subpoena, maybe when I return from vacation in a few weeks as to my having to testify? We will see! My reason and thoughts on this was last week’s question by Mr. Kessel to Danielle, Mike’s former girlfriend, “Do you know a Mr. Nazarian?” or something along those lines. I am very sure, everyone knows Mr. Nazarian, just google me! Hell, I google myself sometimes when I am bored to see what Mr. Nazarian is doing.

Judge Pellman is watching the LA DCFS and so should we all

Judge Amy Pellman

The Los Angeles Times, in an article by Garrett Therolf dated July 2nd,is reporting that a judge in children’s court “Rebukes child welfare workers for abusing their power.“ Hello! this is no big news, it is about time judges are addressing these atrocities being committed under the color of authority! When is it ever bad when you hear or read that a judge of the superior court realizes something is wrong and states so? Bravo to Judge Amy Pellman and any other jurist who knows the law and will speak his or her mind when they see an injustice. Especially for someone like Judge Pellman, she was a highly trained lawyer who specialized in family and children issues prior to being appointed to the bench.

Children and family issues are what this jurist cut her teeth on. Judge Pellman’s name will forever be attached to the “Alliance for Children’s Rights,” an organization that she once led! Now as a sitting Superior Court Judge and able to make observations that something is not right, is that not what a judge is supposed to do? “County Lawyers” who represent the Department of DCFS are upset. Too bad these very same county lawyers were not upset on April 24 when Vyctorya Sandoval at only 17 months of age was pronounced dead after doctors spent 6 hours trying to save her life?…this was another deadly blunder by the crew of DCFS.

Not a question that being a social worker is thankless and at times overwhelming and are there “social workers” with little or no experience you betcha. The problem for DCFS is that their crazy bat shit behavior is no longer being hidden! Thanks to Presiding Judge Michael Nash and for judges like Pellman who will let you know when something stinks…and the media loves it. When it comes to issues about children and moms and dads no hiding behind curtains…the curtains for DCFS have been pulled. Do not be angry at judges like Judge Pellman, the days of secret crazy shit are over (just google Los Angeles DCFS and sit back and be prepared to be shocked).

The lawyers representing DCFS should be looking at those within the department who are filing fraudulent reports (felonies) and taking their frustrations out on those that cannot fight back. There are some fine employees of DCFS working under tough conditions, and at the same time they should be grateful to have a job. What can even make this even more terrible is when you have a DCFS social worker working in concert with a court appointed monitor (this has been an actual issue for families). For those families who fall under this terror that these people can reign down upon them, we all should be thanking judges like Judge Pellman and Judge Nash. It is very obvious or at least it should be to all employees of DCFS that the old way of doing business is gone and now society and media are watching!

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©Straight Talk with John J. Nazarian, Private Investigator
July 3, 2012
All Rights Reserved, do not reproduce in whole or in part without the express written consent of the author.

Opening Children’s Court Is a Good Move in Los Angeles

Judge Michael Nash

Judge Michael Nash

Let’s give Presiding Judge Michael Nash a big round of applause and a standing ovation for having the courage and strength to open the courts to the media. For many years children’s court has been closed to everyone and everything…secretive comes to mind. This secrecy has encouraged INCOMPETENCE to breed and to go unnoticed except to those who sit in judgment..the judges and of course “the silent ones.” What has this “secret” society bred, INCOMPETENCE, and this judge and others are very much aware of this problem. Sure there is no John J. Nazarian with his note pad and Montblanc pen observing the goings on and writing as fast as possible…never ever interested in the children. What I am interested in is the INCOMPETENCE and silliness that I see very often in and around the court house on any given day.

What can one report on, let’s see, a L.A.County Sheriff Security guard aka “clown” or Minors Counsel making fools of themselves or the ever present group of fools known as “Monitors.” John J. Nazarian will listen and observe and report all for the world to read. I have been told that my presence in some courtrooms can make some uncomfortable as to what is “he” (me) going to write…this is just at the Stanley Mosk.

This new openness, if I am understanding this correctly, is what Judge Nash wants, he and other bench officers are seeing things that I think judges are finding disturbing and what is it that is disturbing? INCOMPETENCE of those involved in dealing with children and related issues in the Juvenile Court. INCOMPETENCE being shown by who, Hmmm lets see social workers? Lawyers representing children? and others! This is a little uncomfortable for a whole bunch of people,

“openness is profoundly unsettling in a courthouse accustomed to doing its work in private,“

as reported in the Los Angeles Times (2.12.12).

All I can say is that I am going to be showing up real soon and all I can hope for is that at least one INCOMPETENT player at the Children’s Court makes their presence known and I will make you and your INCOMPETENCE famous. And for all of you who try and get me thrown out of the courtroom…that makes you “subject matter” forever…I promise, and I do have a “Press Pass.”

©Straight Talk with John J. Nazarian, private investigator, security consultant, reporter
February 13, 2012
All Rights Reserved, do not reproduce in whole or in part without the express written consent of this site.

Not much holiday cheer at the Mosk

Stacy Phillips "bag"

I have to wonder every time I visit the Stanley Mosk Courthouse and listen to what takes place in the DIVORCE court departments. Not everything is peachy at all times in all the departments…trust me! Things were not “peachy” for one lawyer and the story follows!

Lisa Helfend Meyer had an interesting encounter with Commissioner James Endman who “nests” comfortably in Dept.84. What became obvious was when Commissioner Endman became annoyed as to what appeared to me was his inability to understand the facts as they were presented to him (it was an international issue), he was done! Commissioner Endman would leave the bench in what could only be described as a “huff” and as he exited his courtroom for his chambers he did very much resemble “Grumpy,” one of the 7 Dwarfs!

All these years as a commissioner and having to deal with the same stuff as all the other judges and commissioners have to deal with I am sure it takes its toll. It takes its toll on me and I am only an observer. I am here to tell you Judge Endman and Lisa Helfend Meyer won’t be making “latkes” any time soon!

Talking about grumps, on the morning of December 15, 2011 I was in the courtroom of Judge Christine Byrd, dept. 65 and who do I see! Sticey Flips aka Stacy Phillips and on the other side is lawyer Laurence R. Goldman representing Freid and Goldsman, he is a partner! Once again I have to wonder where do “high dollar” lawyers buy their clothes? Mr. Goldman was explaining to the court that Manley Freid was flat on his back with Bell’s Palsy (this is a paralysis of the face due to inflammation or trauma of the facial nerve. Certainly it is not caused by laughing too much!) Mr. Goldman explained that Mr. Fried was unable to speak clearly and was partially paralyzed on the left side of his face. All of this bantering was for Judge Byrd to order a continuance due to Mr. Fried’s illness. I am sure that you don’t get this disease by laughing and being warm and friendly.

This could have very well been a meeting of the “worst dressed,” Sticey Flips was wearing an attractive all black outfit and looked pretty good! I could not understand however the several bright neon ‘sticky notes’ stuck on Ms. Flips black handbag? Nice, ever heard of a nice note book or binder? Again, having those bright colors on your black handbag will certainly remind you. I was also confused as to why she was wearing such an odd looking hat while in court? Does she not know better? Then I realized that it was not a hat at all but just her hair, and please forgive me my eyes are not as good as they once were and quite frankly other issues too are not working as well as they once did. May I suggest Jose Eber, and he too wears a hat!

Further down the hall I see Mr. Kolodny looking as good as ever and again a more entertaining and delightful fellow to speak with cannot be found. A great story teller and always great to speak with.

PS: For all of you who may or may not have been ticketed by “The Monster,” if you are lucky enough to drive a Sheriff’s white service car you can park in the red zone and not worry about being ticketed…as I have always said we are not created equal.

©Straight Talk with John J. Nazarian, Private Investigator
December 24, 2011
All Rights Reserved, do not reproduce in whole or in part without the express written consent of the author.

Judges Gordon M Scott and Thomas Trent Lewis movin’ up!

Judge Scott Gordon

It is always a pleasure to report that a change is coming to the Los Angeles Superior Court, family law divisions aka DIVORCE court. Judge Scott M. Gordon has been chosen to take over for Judge Majorie Steinberg as the supervising judge of the family law departments at the end of the year. And if that was not great news in itself, Judge Thomas Trent Lewis will be the assistant supervising judge, can it get any better? This writer does not think so.

There is no secret that both of these bench officers are two of my personal favorites and that of our site We were big supporters that Commissioner Gordon be appointed judge of the superior court, and he was. It was obvious many people felt that it was time for this appointment and as history is proving it certainly was the time. Judge Gordon’s background goes from street cop to prosecutor and at one time serving at the Hague with the international Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in 1997. The decision to choose these two is brilliant and we at are applauding this decision.

Judge Thomas Trent Lewis

Judge Lewis

The other wonderful news is Judge Thomas Trent Lewis, this guy like Gordon knows the game and the games that people like to play in DIVORCE court and was destined for this job as a judge, he is “Judge Lewis.” Sitting in either of these courts is better than any court TV show I have ever watched. Seldom do I ever exit either of these courts not amused after having listened to the lawyers and their clients try and play word games with these two judges (most of the times it does not end well.) It seems only natural that Judge Lewis be chosen as the assistant, Judge Lewis was one of the first attorneys to be certified by the State Bar as a family law specialist in 1997. Judge Lewis is a graduate of UCLA and University of La Verne San Fernando Valley College of Law. Judge Lewis was appointed to the bench in 2006, prior to being appointed Lewis was a partner at Rehwald, Rameson, Lewis & Glasner…nice! The courts in California are in a very serious state of flux and it does not look like it is going to get much better anytime soon. For any jurisdiction to have the dedication and attention to duty that these two bench officers have is better than money in the bank. Judges Scott Gordon and Thomas Trent Lewis are the best examples today of “The Buck Stops Here.”

And again I warn all of you going before either of these two, get your Sh*# together and keep it straight, for if you don’t you will leave these courts feeling as though your life is about to change for the worse, and you will be right! Tell these two judges the truth and you will be treated fairly, my opinion.

©Straight Talk with John J. Nazarian, Private Investigator
October 16, 2011
All Rights Reserved, do not reproduce in whole or in part without the express written consent of the author.

Judge Willet settles in at Stanley Mosk

Judge Robert E. WillettGo to Central Casting and tell them, “I need someone who looks like a judge, and he needs to look elderly.” Guess what? the guy you are looking for is in Dept. 43 down at the “Stanley.” Over the last few weeks I have heard different opinions on the “new” judge that took Judge Rafael Ongkeko’s place. Being perfectly honest here folks, Judge Ongkeko was not the most popular judge among the city’s divorce lawyers. Many — not all — would pass on having Ongkeko hear a case. Judge Ongkeko had a personality that was a little tough to understand, I have had that very same problem over the years. Should I say that maybe criminal courts in Van Nuys might be more fertile ground for his style and warm personality…just a suggestion (this was the judge that Mel Gibson’s legal team got booted from his case. Under California law, lawyers have 10 days from the filing date to apply for a different judge).

Back to Judge Robert E. Willett, a former litigator for over thirty years with the firm of O’Melveney. Pretty much right out of Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law (1974) he went to work with O’Melveney and remained there up until his appointment by former Governor Schwarzenegger in 2010 to the Superior Court bench. Now I am just guessing that this had to be a BIG pay cut for Judge Willett. For any lawyer to become a judge it is almost a crowning point, the icing on the cake and again, Judge Willett was not making minimum wage as a 30 year litigatior with a firm like O’Melveney (sounds like a good name for a cookie). So let’s not do any fund-raising for the good judge, now some judges who had other positions and not with big firms or founding partners, them maybe.

I spoke to several lawyers prior to visiting Dept. 43 and having a seat. Some that I spoke to had a wait-and-see attitude except for Patrick DeCarolis of Trope and Decarolis. Patrick told me that he got a sense of “quiet power“ and furthermore to make his point even more clearly, “I like him.” Well I sat in the front row as I often do and watched and listened as a group of four lawyers attempted to practice law. I immediately saw what Mr. DeCarolis had mentioned, “quiet power,” Judge Willett is not going to wring his hands and I don’t see him sitting on his hands and rocking either, he has been around and in far more difficult positions as a litigator than he will be in the position he holds now. My point is that I think we have a new judge who once he gets his footing is going to be one of our favorites at

Sure he has that smile and glint in his eye, more likely he has that even when he is pissed, you know what I mean? And it is going to be the job of any lawyer in front of Judge Willett to figure out — is he smiling because I am doing a good job or is he thinking, “moron”! To me that is the best part of Judge Robert E. Willett.

Welcome Judge Willett to the “Stanley” from all of us at

©John J. Nazarian, Private Investigator and Security Consultant
June 24, 2011
All Rights Reserved, do not reproduce in whole or in part without the express written consent of the author.

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