In 2015 Las Vegas real estate agent Ernesto Joshua Ramos was sentenced to a 366-day federal prison sentence after he plead guilty to attempting to extort UFC President Dana White for $200,000 over a video tape that showed White having sex with Ramos’ then-girlfriend in a hotel room during a UFC event in Brazil in October 2014.
During the criminal case a federal judge ordered Ramos, as well as prosecutors and defence lawyers, to not reveal White’s identity.
In 2020 Ramos sued White, claiming that White reneged on an offer to pay him $450,000 to keep his name secret after the criminal case had closed. Also in his lawsuit Ramos claimed that he did not try to extort White over the tape and that the cash agreement was used to entice him into pleading guilty.
White’s lawyers have maintained that there was never any kind of deal between Ramos and White.
Last year a District Judge dismissed Ramos’ lawsuit. Ramos appealed that decision.
This week the Nevada’s Supreme Court upheld that dismissal, per Las Vegas Review-Journal.
In their write-up on the decision LVRJ said that a three-justice panel sided with “the politically-connected White” without holding a hearing. LVRJ also wrote that White “has prominent Republican connections”.
The Nevada Surpreme Court has seven justices. Justices are elected to the court on six-year terms. Nevada’s Governor appoints justices in the case of a vacancy. Of the seven current justices, two were—at one point—appointed by a Governor. Both those justices, Douglas W. Herndon and Lidia S. Stiglich, were appointed by Republican Governors.
Stiglich was a member of the three justice panel, along with Chief Justice Ron Parraguirre and the since retired Justice Mark Gibbons. Before election to the Supreme Court Parraguirre was appointed to the Eighth Judicial District Court by a Republican Governor.
In a five-page opinion on the case the panel wrote, “Ramos fails to identify anything specifically that the district court inappropriately relied on in making its determination.”
Ramos’ attorney Ian Christopherson said he will seek to have this decision reviewed by the entire Supreme Court.
“I’m shocked that the Supreme Court gave Mr. White a pass on this,” he said.
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