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2012
11-26

史上最可笑的诉讼 9 Most Laughable Lawsuits

他们是案件的受害者,理应受到同情,不想却遭到了众人的谴责和嘲讽,而他们所谓的受害经历也被传为笑谈。这是为何?因为他们向法院提起的诉讼荒唐得让人哭笑不得,他们向被告提出的索赔数额大得让专家都愕然,他们对司法制度的藐视让法官再也不能坐视不管……就让我们随本文来看看这些史上最可笑的诉讼,一睹他们那让人疯狂的瞬间……

史上最可笑的诉讼

Americans take great pride in the U.S. legal system, which promises the right to a fair trial, due process1) and protection for people and their property. But some people, whether out of greed or sheer ignorance, push the boundaries of acceptability and clog2) the legal system with outrageous lawsuits. Whether it’s a convict who sues himself or an unsatisfied beer drinker who blames the company for his lack of dates, our verdict is: Case dismissed3)!
史上最可笑的诉讼 9 Most Laughable Lawsuits - 第1张  | 快乐英语  美国人对本国的司法制度十分引以为傲,这一制度承诺:使公民享有公平审判权、遵循正当法律程序执法,以及保护公民的人身和财产安全。但有些人,或者是出于贪婪,或者是由于纯粹的无知,竟会用一些极为荒唐的诉讼来挑战公众的接受底线,妨碍司法制度。无论是自己起诉自己的罪犯,还是指责啤酒厂商要为他不佳的桃花运负责的牢骚满腹的消费者,我们的裁决都是:驳回起诉!

  Google Maps Blamed for Dangerous Directions: $100,000
  谷歌地图被指控提供危险导向:原告索赔10万美元

When Lauren Rosenberg wanted to walk through Park City, Utah in January 2010, she used Google Maps for directions. Unfortunately, the site sent her down a highway with no safe-pedestrian path. When she was hit by a car, she sued both the driver and Google for more than $100,000 in damages. Rosenberg argues Google should have warned her about the dangerous path (the full version of Google Maps does include a warning, but she used the search engine on her BlackBerry, which she claimed didn’t show one). We argue, however, that she should’ve used the old noggin4) and decided for herself not to walk down a dangerous highway.
2010年1月,当劳伦·罗森堡准备步行穿过犹他州的帕克城时,她使用了谷歌地图为自己指路。可惜她的运气不太好,按照地图的指示,她走上了一条没有安全行人便道的公路,结果被一辆驶过的汽车撞伤。事后,她把肇事司机和谷歌公司一起告上了法庭,索要超过10万美元的赔偿金。罗森堡认为,谷歌应该预先警示她那是一条危险路段(其实谷歌地图的完整版本的确包含了一条警告信息,但罗森堡声称她用自己的黑莓手机上网进行搜索时,谷歌并未显示这条信息)。然而,我们认为,她当时就应该好好动动脑子,自己作出判断——不能沿着一条危险的公路往前走。

  Bank of America Blamed for Bad Service: $1,784 Billion Trillion
  美国银行被指控服务态度恶劣:原告索赔17,840兆亿美元

Dalton Chiscolm was unhappy when the bank refused to deposit5) some checks for him due to incomplete routing numbers6). He was very, very unhappy. So in August 2009, he sued Bank of America and its board for “1,784 billion trillion dollars”. Just to be clear, that’s 21 zeros—plus he demanded an additional $2.164 million, according to Reuters. “These are the kind of numbers you deal with only on a cosmic scale,” Sylvain Cappell, New York University’s professor at the Courant Institute for Mathematical Sciences said to Reuters. It’s also the kind of numbers you deal with when you’re not making any sense.
当美国银行以路由号码不完整为由拒绝为多尔顿·奇斯科姆办理支票存储业务时,他对此十分不满。他简直是大为光火。于是,2009年8月,他把美国银行及其董事局告上了法庭,索赔“17,840兆亿美元”。再说清楚一点,那可是21个零——此外,据路透社报道,他还提出了一笔附加的216.4万美元的诉求。“这样的数字只能用天文数字来形容。”纽约大学克朗数学研究所的教授西尔万·卡佩尔对路透社这样表示。事实上,这样的数字也只有在你完全“失心疯”的情况下才想得出来。

  Comedian Blamed for Mother-in-Law Jokes: Unspecified Amount
  喜剧演员因讲述有关婆婆的笑话被指控:原告索赔数额不详

When comic Sunda Croonquist, who is half black and half Swedish, married a Jewish man, her newfound family became a wellspring of material for her act. But after years of her telling mother-in-law jokes, her mother-in-law stopped thinking it was so funny: In August 2009 she decided to sue for defamation7). The only problem was that she never told her daughter-in-law she didn’t like the jokes before taking her to court. In May 2010, a judge threw out the case, citing the jokes are protected speech because they were Croonquist’s opinions and not facts. But we’re guessing things are still pretty tense at family gatherings.
兼有黑人和瑞典血统的喜剧演员桑达·克龙奎斯特和一名犹太男子结婚后,这个新组建的家庭为她的表演提供了源源不断的素材。但当她把有关婆婆的笑话讲了几年之后,她的婆婆开始觉得这些笑话不再那么好笑了:2009年8月,婆婆决定告儿媳诽谤。但问题是,在把儿媳送上法庭之前,她从来没跟儿媳说过自己不喜欢这些笑话。2010年5月,法官驳回了这起案件,理由是这些笑话表达的是克龙奎斯特的个人见解而非事实,是受法律保护的言论。不过,据我们推测,在他们的家庭聚会上,气氛应该还是挺紧张的。

  Homeless People Blamed for Being in the Street: $1 Million
  无家可归者被指控在街道上逗留:原告索赔100万美元

After contending with homeless people outside his store for two years, high-end antique8) shop owner Karl Kemp decided to sue in January 2007. Kemp argued the transients9) disrupted his business by using the sidewalk outside his store on New York’s Upper East Side as “a urinal10) , a spittoon11) and an occasional dressing room”. Only problem? The defendants, listed as John Smith, John Doe, Bob Doe and Jane Doe12), are, well, homeless. So they didn’t have any money to sue for. Kemp also wanted a restraining order, requiring the defendants to stay at least 100 feet from the store—but we think offering them some cash or coupons as incentive to go elsewhere probably would’ve worked just as well.
在跟店门外的流浪者不断斗争了两年之后,2007年1月,高档古董店店主卡尔·肯普决定提起诉讼。肯普的古董店位于纽约上东区,他声称,这些流浪者把他店门前的人行道当成了“便池、痰盂和临时更衣室”,从而影响了他的生意。唯一的问题是——被告名单上的几个人,某甲、某乙、某丙、某丁,全都是无家可归者,所以就算是起诉他们,也得不到任何赔偿。肯普同时还想申请一纸限令,要求被告不得在他的商店周围至少100英尺的范围内出现——不过,我们觉得,如果送给这些流浪汉一些现金和赠券,把他们引到别处去,同样能把问题解决了。

  Anheuser-Busch Blamed for Beer Failing to Attract Women: $10,000
  安海斯-布希公司被指控其啤酒未能成功带来桃花运:原告索赔1万美元

Most people understand that commercials in which beer magically turns men into chick magnets13) are not real. But not Richard Overton. In 1991 he sued Anheuser-Busch for $10,000, saying the company’s ads, in which beer creates “scenic tropical settings and beautiful women and men engaged in endless and unrestricted merriment”, weren’t true. The case was dismissed, but we wonder if Overton switched to foreign brews14) in protest.
大多数人都知道广告里那种一罐啤酒就能让平庸男摇身一变成为万人迷的情节不能当真。但理查德·奥弗顿可不这么想。1991年,他起诉了安海斯-布希公司,并索赔1万美元。因为在该公司的广告中,啤酒给人带来一幅“热带风光旖旎美妙,美女帅哥纵情嬉戏”的场景,他声称这完全是谎言。他的起诉被驳回了,不过,我们倒是挺想知道奥弗顿是否会改喝外国啤酒以示抗议。

  Mourning Family Blamed for Damages Done to Car That Hit Son: $29,400
  丧子家庭被肇事司机指控撞坏汽车:原告索赔2.94万美元

In August 2004, Tomas Delgado struck and killed 17-year-old Enaitz Iriondo Trinidad when the boy was riding his bike near Haro, Spain. Even though Delgado was driving 70 mph in a 55 mph zone, a judge dismissed criminal charges against him. But did Delgado consider himself lucky under the circumstances? No. Two years after the wreck, he sued the family for €20,000 ($29,400) in damages to his Audi A-8 and for car rental costs. He withdrew the lawsuit after hundreds of people descended on the courthouse to support the boy’s parents—but no amount of backtracking will ever redeem him for being the biggest jerk15) on the planet.
2004年8月,在西班牙哈罗市附近,托马斯·德尔加多驾车撞死了正在骑车的17岁少年伊内茨·伊里翁多·特立尼达。尽管德尔加多当时是以70英里的时速行驶在限速55英里的路段上,法官仍然驳回了对他的刑事指控。但德尔加多有没有为此感到庆幸呢?没有。事故发生两年之后,他反而把特立尼达的家人告上了法庭,向他们索赔他那辆奥迪A-8的修理费和租车费用,共计2万欧元(合2.94万美元)。在数百位民众突然现身法院表达对少年家人的支持之后,德尔加多撤回了起诉——不过,就算收回愚蠢的决定,也不能改变他是世界上头号浑球这一事实。

  Dry Cleaner Blamed for Losing Pants: $67 Million
  干洗店被指控遗失顾客送洗的裤子:原告索赔6,700万美元

Ironically, the worst part about this story is not that Roy L. Pearson, Jr., clogged up the legal system with a suit against a dry cleaner for $67 million over lost pants; it’s that Pearson was a Washington, DC, judge at the time. He argued that drycleaners Soo and Jin Chung failed to deliver on the “same-day service” and “satisfaction guaranteed” advertisement. Although Pearson lowered his claim to $54 million, a judge ruled in favor of the Chungs. Pearson filed an appeal, which was also rejected, but the process forced the Chungs to close two of their three stores to finance their defense. Revenge is a dish best served cold16), however, because Pearson lost his job four months into the lawsuit after a review board found he lacked “appropriate judgment and judicial temperament.”
具有讽刺意味的是,关于这起案子最离谱的部分还不是小罗伊·L·皮尔逊滥用起诉权,为一条丢失的裤子向干洗店索赔6,700万美元,而是皮尔逊本人当时就是华盛顿特区的一名法官。皮尔逊指责郑氏干洗店未能履行其广告中作出的“当日可取”和“保证满意”的承诺。尽管皮尔逊稍后把索赔金额降到了5,400万美元,法官仍判郑家人胜诉。皮尔逊提出上诉,也被驳回了。但在案件审理期间,郑家被迫关闭了三间店中的两间以支付辩护费用。不过,“君子报仇,十年不晚”,由于审查委员会认为皮尔逊缺乏“恰当的判断力和法官应有的气度”,在诉讼进行了四个月之后,皮尔逊被炒了鱿鱼。

  Victoria’s Secret Blamed for Thong17) Injury to Eye: $25,000+
  “维多利亚的秘密”被指控其丁字裤导致眼睛受伤:原告索赔超过2.5万美元

Looks like thong underwear can get a girl into real trouble if she’s not careful. In May 2007, Los Angeles traffic cop Macrida Patterson said she was injured by a defective thong. “I was putting on my underwear from Victoria’s Secret, and the metal popped into my eye,” Patterson told the Today Show. According to her attorney Jason Buccat, a rogue18) metal appliqué19) caused three cuts to her cornea20), requiring the use of topical steroids21) to heal it. Buccat said the lawsuit was about protecting consumers, adding he just wanted to “make Macrida Patterson whole again.” Buccat never revealed exactly how much his client wanted to sue for, but at minimum, he claimed that being “whole” again would take at least $25,000.
看来要是不多加小心的话,丁字裤会给姑娘们惹来大麻烦。2007年5月,洛杉矶交警马可丽达·帕特森说自己被一条有质量问题的丁字裤弄伤了。帕特森在《今日秀》节目中说:“我正在穿一条‘维多利亚的秘密’品牌的内裤,结果上面的金属片弹到了我的眼睛里。”据她的律师贾森·布加特讲,一片质量有问题的金属装饰贴片在帕特森的眼角膜上划了三道小口,她需要使用类固醇进行局部治疗。布加特说打这场官司是为了保护消费者的权益,并补充说他只想“让马可丽达·帕特森重返健全人行列”。布加特并未透露委托人的具体索赔数额,但他声称,重获“健全”至少需要2.5万美元。

  Man Blamed for Putting Himself in Jail: $5 Million
  一名男子被指控自己把自己送进监狱:原告索赔500万美元

When all else fails, sue yourself, right? That’s what Virginia inmate Robert Lee Brock thought when he sued himself in 1995 for violating his own civil liberties and religious beliefs by getting drunk enough to commit the crimes that landed him in jail. The jailbird22) hoped the state would be forced to pay on his behalf because he was a ward23) of the state. Obviously the case was dismissed; the judge reported: “Plaintiff24) has presented an innovative approach to civil rights litigation. However, his claim and especially the relief sought are totally ludicrous.” We concur25)!
要是告不了别人,那就告自己吧,怎么样?弗吉尼亚州的服刑人员罗伯特·李·布罗克就是这么想的。1995年,他以自己因酒后犯罪被捕入狱这一行为侵犯了自己的公民自由权利并违背了宗教信仰为由,把自己告上法庭。既然身处政府的监管之下,这位囚犯希望能迫使州政府替自己支付这笔赔偿。显而易见,案件被驳回。法官表示:“起诉人为民事权利诉讼带来了一些新意。但是,他提出的要求,特别是他寻求的补偿简直是荒谬至极。”我们深有同感!Alexandra Gekas/文

1. due process:法律上的正当程序
2. clog [klɒɡ] vt. 妨碍,阻塞
3. dismiss [dɪsˈmɪs] vt. 驳回,不受理
4. noggin [ˈnɒɡin] n.〈俚〉脑袋
5. deposit [dɪˈpɒzɪt] vt. 存放,存钱
6. routing number:也称做“Routing Transit Number”或“ABA Number”,中文可译成“路由号码”或“汇款路径号码”。它是由ABA (美国银行家协会)在美联储监管和协助下提出的金融机构识别码,很多金融机构都有一个,主要用于和银行相关的交易、转账、清算等的路由确认。
7. defamation[ˌdefəˈmeɪʃ(ə)n] n. 诽谤
8. antique [ænˈtiːk] n. 古物,古董
9. transient [ˈtrænziənt] n. 流浪者
10. urinal [juˈraɪn(ə)l] n. 尿壶,小便池
11. spittoon [spɪˈtuːn] n. 痰盂
12. 此处的英文名都是代称,相当于中文里的张三、李四等。
13. chick magnet:能吸引女性注意的男人,万人迷
14. brew [bruː] n. 酿造的饮料,啤酒
15. jerk [dʒɜː(r)k] n.〈俚〉愚蠢的人
16. Revenge is a dish best served cold:君子报仇,十年不晚
17. thong [θɒŋ] n. 丁字裤
18. rogue [rəʊɡ] adj. 有缺陷的,劣等的
19. appliqué [əˈpliːkeɪ] n. 缝饰,镶饰
20. cornea [ˈkɔː(r)niə] n. [医]角膜
21. steroid [ˈstɪərɔɪd] n. [生化]类固醇
22. jailbird [ˈdʒeɪlˌbɜː(r)d] n. 囚犯
23. ward [wɔː(r)d] n. [律]受监护人
24. plaintiff [ˈpleɪntɪf] n. [律]起诉人,原告
25. concur [kənˈkɜː(r)] vi. 同意,表示意见一致

最后编辑:
作者:千年光影
这个作者貌似有点懒,什么都没有留下。

史上最可笑的诉讼 9 Most Laughable Lawsuits》有 2 条评论

  1. 三冠王者 说:

    This article is too diffculty to me,there are many new words i have never seen them before. I should learn hard.

  2. 三冠王者 说:

    Thank you for your excellent work.