, SBN 029437 LAW OFFICE OF CHRIS FORD 2 125 East Coronado Road 3 Phoenix, AZ 85004 t: 602-688-5571 4 f: 888-447-3714 5 cford@azbar.org 6 Attorneys for Plaintiffs, JOSE ROBERTO SOTO, MARIA SALAZAR, MAYRA MIRANDA 7 8 9 10 11 12 JOSE ROBERTO SOTO, MARIA 13 14 15 v. 16 LEAGUE OF UNITED LATIN 17 CHAPTER (LULAC); JOHN MIRELES, 18 Arizona Chapter; DAVID HERNANDEZ, 19 LULAC, Arizona Chapter; ANA
in his capacity as executive director of VALENZUELA, in her capacity as in his capacity as an officer of LULAC, AMERICAN CITIZENS, ARIZONA SALAZAR, MAYRA DISCUA MINRANDA, Plaintiffs, Case No. CV2013-008731 PLAINTIFFS’ REPLY IN SUPPORT OF THEIR CLOSING ARGUMENT Assigned to: Hon. Michael Herrod


20 national vice-president for youth for 22 23 24 25 I. 26 27
1083; DOES 1-20,

21 capacity as president, LULAC Council #
Defendants. ARGUMENT Defendants Fail to Demonstrate that Plaintiff Soto Lacks Standing As a Plaintiff or Class Representative. Having tried to persuade the court that it lacks jurisdiction over the case, then having


28 opposed certification of the class – and having failed on both counts despite having misled the court
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1 in support of the latter effort1 – Defendants now take the tack that Plaintiff Jose Roberto Soto lacks 2 standing in this case. Defendants’ Closing Argument and Supporting Evidence (“DCA”), at 11:3-4. 3 Defendants reason that Plaintiff Soto has no standing because “he personally was not excluded 4 from LULAC membership.” Id.; see also DCA, at 14:15 (Plaintiff Soto “was a ‘member in good 5 standing’”). 6
It is true that Plaintiff Soto was a LULAC member at the relevant times, serving as secretary

7 of council no. 1152. TRX1, at 110:22-24, 113:9-14; Exhibit 8, at 14 (“Jose R. Soto” shown as 8 member of council no. 1152). However, all Plaintiffs and class members initially were granted 9 membership in LULAC. TRX2, at 160:2-12 (Membership director Guadalupe Morales, asked 10 whether she “issued charters to these 48 [Arizona] councils,” testified, “Yes, I did”). Therefore, 11 Defendants’ contention that Plaintiff Soto supposedly does not have standing because “he has no 12 facts in common” with other Plaintiffs and class members, DCA, at 14:14-22, fails. 13
It is true that Plaintiff Soto was credentialed to vote at the National convention, as

14 defendants point out. DCA, at 14:15-16. But that fact does not support Defendant’s contention that 15 Plaintiff Soto’s situation is somehow distinct from that of others from the Arizona delegation. See 16 DCA, at 14:11-26. First, Defendants concede that Plaintiff Soto, though credentialed at the National 17 convention, “was not credentialed at the LULAC State Convention in Tucson.” DCA, at 3:20-24 18 (emphasis omitted). Thus, at minimum, Plaintiff Soto is similarly situated to those who attended the 19 Arizona Convention. 20 22 23 24 25 26 27 28
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Moreover, witness Socorro Esquibel was one of seven (of a total of 25) delegates from the

21 Tucson Councils to be admitted into LULAC’s national voting assembly, e.g. TRX1, at 49:1-20,

The court granted Plaintiffs’ Motion to Certify Class Action in part because Defendants filed no opposition. TRX1, at 19:2-17. Worth noting is that Defendants misrepresented to the Court that they had filed a response to that motion. Initially asked by the court whether he had filed a response, counsel for Defendants stated, “I did, your honor.” TRX1, at 6:10. However, later asked when he had filed Defendants’ response, Defendants’ counsel equivocated: “It could be, Your Honor, that we’re going to address our position here as our question, so I don’t believe it’s going to affect the outcome. If they’re wrong on the issue of the merits, they’re going to wrong on all class members ….” TRX1, at 19:4-8.


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1 but Defendants make no argument that she is not a class member. In any case, procedural rules 2 allow a court to create subclasses where appropriate. Motion to Certify Class Action, Dec. 12, 3 2013, at 12:6-12 (citing Ariz. R. Civ. P. 23(c)(4)(B); Betts v. Reliable Collection Agency, Ltd., 659 4 F.2d 1000, 1005, (9th Cir. 1981)). Thus, even if the Court here considered Plaintiff Soto and other 5 class members not to be similarly situated to other Plaintiffs and class members because they 6 managed to get past Defendants’ crooked credentialing process, roadblock and security guards and 7 into the national voting assembly, it could create a subclass for those members. 8
Nonetheless, those class members who did get into the assembly suffered the same harm as

9 did the remainder of the class: They were subjected to a rigged election in which (1) the basis for 10 excluding the Arizona delegation – that Miguel Zazueta supposedly was not a member in good 11 standing – is at best open to question and certainly not proven; (2) class members and others were 12 prevented from challenging the vote to seat the Arizona delegation; and (3) the vote tallies, by 13 Defendants’ own admission, were “estimated” rather than counted. In summary, Plaintiff Soto and 14 witness Esquibel are similarly situated to other Plaintiffs and class members. Accordingly, 15 defendants’ attempt to distinguish Plaintiff Soto’s situation with that of other class members, so as 16 to contend he has no standing or is not a class members, is without merit. 17
Defendants’ case analysis also does nothing to show that Plaintiff Soto lacks standing.

18 DCA, at 14:28-15:18. For example, as discussed above and in Plaintiffs’ Closing Argument, 19 Plaintiff Soto suffered “cognizable” injury as a result of Defendants’ deliberate acts including, at 20 minimum, having been prevented from voting at the Arizona Convention and subjected to 21 fraudulent elections in both Tucson and Las Vegas. In the latter, the Arizona delegation was 22 excluded from voting and was not given a fair chance to challenge the corrupt election process – 23 until Plaintiffs took LULAC to court. 24
O’Shea v. Littleton, 414 U.S. 488, 94 S. Ct. 669 (1974) is inapposite because it applies to

25 “[p]laintiffs in the federal courts.” Id. at 493, 94 S. Ct. at 675. In any case, Plaintiff Soto, other 26 Plaintiffs and class members have demonstrated that they have a personal stake in the outcome and 27 sustained injury as a result of the challenged conduct. Id. at 493-94, 94 S. Ct. at 675. Defendants 28 further appear to challenge the Court’s ruling certifying class action in this matter. See DCA, at
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1 15:3-18. If so, their effort is too late. TRX1, at 19:14-17 (Court orders certifying class, there being 2 “no timely response to the motion to certify class”). Further, none of the class action cases 3 Defendants cite is apposite, because, as discussed above, Plaintiffs and class members all have 4 standing to assert the causes in their class action. 5 II. 6 7
Because Defendants Fail to Prove Miguel Zazueta Was Not in Good Standing When He Sponsored the Arizona Councils, Their Reversing the Charters of Those Councils Lacks Grounding in LULAC Governing Documents. As discussed in Plaintiffs’ Closing Argument, the lynchpin of Defendants’ scheme to keep

8 the Phoenix and San Luis councils out of the votes at the Arizona and National conventions is their 9 contention that Miguel Zazueta “was not a ‘member in good standing,’” E.g. DCA 2:2, 8:2, 8:21, 10 rendering applications of the 48 councils he sponsored to be “fatally flawed.” DCA, at 9:15-22. 11 Defendants contend that this alleged fact was “uncontroverted.” DCA, at 10:5-10, 10:29-21. That 12 contention is unsupported by the evidence. 13
Moreover, the fact that Ms. Morales sent an email to Mr. Zazueta informing him he

14 was not a member in good standing one day before Mr. Escobar formally issued his legal 15 opinion reaching the same conclusion shows that the legal opinion serves merely as a cover for 16 defendants’ plan, conceived possibly as early as April 2013, to thwart participation in LULAC 17 affairs by the 48 new councils, which sought to be chartered that same month. See Plaintiffs’ 18 Closing Argument (“PCA”), at 3:19-27 & portions of the transcripts cited therein; see Exhibits 7-8. 19 More importantly, testimony of Defendants’ witnesses and a review of LULAC’s governing 20 documents make clear that it is impossible to determine for certain whether Miguel Zazueta was in 21 good standing in April 2013 when he sponsored the 48 new councils. See PCA, at 2:22-3:18 & 4:922 5:28 & portions of the transcripts and exhibits cited therein; see Exhibits 7, 8, 25. Likewise, 23 Defendants have not proven and cannot prove that Mr. Zazueta was not in good standing at 24 the relevant times. 25 III. 26 27
Defendants’ Witnesses Testimony Regarding the Arizona Convention Lacks Credibility and Is Controverted by Ample Evidence. Defendants’ witness Brenda Estrada testified that the delegates from Phoenix and San Luis

28 did not present delegate letters as part of the process to become qualified to vote at the Arizona
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1 convention. TRX2, at 216:6-8; DCA 6:11-13 (Ms. Estrada testified that Plantiff Soto “and others” 2 did not present delegate letters). However, Ms. Estrada’s testimony is not credible. For example, 3 she was unable to keep her story straight with others of Defendants’ witnesses regarding when 4 registration at the Arizona convention was supposed to take place or did take place. See PCA, at 5 6:17-7:1 & portions of the transcripts cited therein. 6
Moreover, Ms. Estrada gave inconsistent testimony under questioning by the Court.

7 Asked by the Court when LULAC sent out the revised agenda for the Arizona convention that 8 shortened the time allotted for registration from two hours to one, compare Exhibit 1, at 2 with 9 Exhibit 28, Ms. Estrada responded, “I’m not the person to do that.” TRX2, at 222:10-06. The Court 10 then asked Ms. Estrada whether she has any personal knowledge of when the notice of the change 11 was sent out, she testified, “Yeah, I’m – I’m one of the persons.” TRX2, at 222:24-223:2. 12
Leave aside Ms. Estrada’s equivocating, Defendants came up with the “revised” agenda

13 after hearing testimony in the first evidentiary hearing and apparently so hastily concocted it 14 that they did not even have time to make copies for the Court or opposing party. PCA, at 6:1715 7:13 and portions of the transcripts cited therein; TRX2, at 230:23-231:25; Exhibit 28. 16
Given the inconsistent testimony of Defendants’ witnesses, their hastily submitted exhibit,

17 and the lack of any mention of registration in the minutes of the Arizona convention, it is obvious 18 that the evidence Defendants have submitted regarding the registration process is not credible. It 19 also is controverted by extensive testimony regarding the registration process. PCA, at 6:17-7:13 & 20 portions of the transcripts cited therein. 21 IV. 22 23
Defendants Had No Legal Basis for Rejecting the Delegate Letters Presented by the Phoenix and San Luis Councils on June 8, 2013 and Thereby Denying Them the Vote. Testimony further reveals that as part of the registration process, the Phoenix and San Luis

24 councils presented delegate letters when attempting to become qualified to vote at the Arizona
2 25 convention. For example, witness Esquibel testified that the Arizona councils attempted to submit

26 27 28
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As demonstrated supra, testimony by Defendants’ witnesses to the contrary lacks credibility.


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1 delegate letters at the Arizona Convention, further commenting that she saw the letters and that they 2 were “professionally done.” TRX1, at 35:15-36:11. The delegate letters from the Phoenix and San 3 Luis councils, however, “were not accepted.” TRX1, at 36:13-15. 4
Worth noting is that at the time of the Arizona convention, the Phoenix and San Luis

5 councils sponsored by Miguel Zazueta had been chartered and were in good standing. TRX2, 6 at 23:20-40:23, 127:6-10, 159:19-162:6; Exhibits 7, 8, 25. While evidence shows that Defendants 7 had been plotting to rid the membership rolls of Miguel Zazueta for some time so as to ensure 8 Defendant Mireles would have no competition in his bid to head LULAC’s Arizona chapter, it was 9 only after the Arizona Convention that Defendant Hernandez, as executive director of the 10 Arizona chapter, contacted national legal advisor Manuel Escobar to obtain a “legal opinion” 11 stating that Mr. Zazueta supposedly was not a member in good standing, so as to provide 12 cover for their invalidating the charters to the 48 councils they earlier had issued. TRX2, at 13 246:8-13, 300:13-301:7. And that legal opinion was not issued until June 11, 2013 by Guadalupe 14 Morales, membership director, then by Mr. Escobar on June 12, 2013. TRX2, at 76:15-17, 135:1815 20, 136:13-137:10; Exhibits 16-18. 16
Moreover, although Defendants’ witness testified that a member has to send in a delegate

17 letter 30 days prior to the convention at which that member plans to vote, uncontested testimony 18 shows that Ms. Esquibel’s councils were credentialed to vote at the Arizona convention even 19 though they not only had not submitted delegate letters 30 days in advance, but without having to 20 submit a complete set of delegate letters. TRX1, at 34:5-36:13, TRX2, at 239:25-240:4. Thus, the 21 Tucson Councils were given “preferential treatment,” because at that time Defendants perceived 22 Ms. Esquibel and her councils to be supportive of their chosen candidates. TRX1, at 29:16-22. On 23 the other hand, Defendants “didn’t give [the Phoenix and San Luis councils] the right for anything 24 as a LULAC member.” TRX1, at 35:9-10. 25
In summary, Defendants had no justification based on LULAC governing documents

26 or the law to reject the delegate letters offered on June 8, 2013 by the Phoenix and San Luis 27 councils. Consequently, Defendants had no legal justification for denying those councils the vote 28 that day in Tucson. The evidence shows that Defendants rigged the elections at the Arizona
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1 convention, depriving Plaintiffs and class members of due process and otherwise harming them as 2 set forth in Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint. 3 V. 4
Defendants Cannot Disprove That the Election in Las Vegas Was Rigged. Certain of Defendants’ assertions in their Closing Arguments are contrary to evidence. For

5 example, they claimed that according to Ms. Muñoz’s testimony, it “was not physically possible” to 6 conduct registration in two locations, with some registrations taking place in the Senate Room, 7 “because the computer program and registration system was such that the entire registration process 8 had to be done in one single registration location.” DCA, at 13:4-9. That statement 9 mischaracterizes Ms. Muñoz’s testimony. Under questioning by the Court, Ms. Muñoz testified 10 that “the registration is on a network and we have a server and we have several computers.” TRX2, 11 at 175:23-25. Since Defendants utilized several computers on a network to track registration at the 12 National convention, nothing could stop them from placing one of those computers in the Senate 13 Room or anywhere else. Thus, their own witness’s testimony undermines their assertion that it 14 “was not physically possible” to conduct registration in two locations. 15
Defendants further assert that “no person attending the LULAC National Convention

16 properly challenged the elections conducted at the National Convention.” DCA, at 2:17-18; see also 17 DCA, at 8:10-17 (“nobody challenged that vote” to overturn Mr. Escobar’s legal opinion). First, 18 this assertion does nothing to disprove Plaintiffs’ principal allegations, i.e. that Defendants 19 conducted rigged and fraudulent elections in Tucson and Las Vegas, damaging Plaintiffs financially 20 and depriving them of basic due process. 21
In any case, Plaintiffs or class members attempted to challenge Defendants’ having cut off

22 debate on Mr. Dovlina’s motion to set aside Mr. Escobar’s legal opinion by calling a “point of 23 order” (at which point Defendants muted and took away microphones set up so that delegates could 24 speak to issues). PCA, at 17:22-28 & portions of the transcripts cited therein. Calling a point of 25 order appears to follow proper procedure under LULAC’s governing documents and rules.3 Thus, 26 27 28
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Manuel Escober, LULAC’s national legal advisor, testified that LULAC follows Robert’s Rules of Order when conducting its business, where other LULAC rules do not address a matter.


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1 Defendants’ contention that “no person” at the National convention “properly” challenged the vote 2 on Mr. Dovlina’s motion, which was taken in obvious violation of the organization’s governing 3 documents and rules, is groundless. PCA, at 15:3-17:21 & portions of the transcripts and exhibits 4 cited therein. Plaintiffs further challenged Defendants’ exclusion of the Arizona delegation by 5 attempting an appeal to the credentials committee, but Defendants’ roadblock physically cut them 6 off from appealing, and when Mr. Soto took their case to the committee, he was given the “cold 7 shoulder.” PCA, at 14:1-16 & n.6 & portions of the transcripts cited therein. 8
In addition, Defendants self-servingly aver that the inclusion of the Arizona delegates in the

9 votes at the National convention “would not have made a difference in the election.” DCA, at 2:1910 23; see also DCA, at 8:8-9 (2/3 of the vote “against the motion” to set aside Mr. Escobar’s legal 11 opinion), 7:26-27 (vote “was not close”). The very problem with that assertion and a main 12 reason that the vote cannot be proven to have been conducted fairly is that Defendants chose 13 not to count the vote, but rather to “estimate” it, in the process admittedly violating not only 14 LULAC’s constitution and bylaws, but their own hand-chosen convention rules. See PCA, at 15 15:3-17:28 & portions of the transcripts and exhibits cited therein. Accordingly, Defendants cannot 16 possibly show that the inclusion of the Arizona councils “would not have made a difference” in the 17 elections at the National convention. 18 VI. 19
Defendants Cannot Disprove That They Are Liable to Plaintiffs for Damages. Defendants also cannot show that their deliberate schemes left Plaintiffs undamaged.

20 Defendants claim that Plaintiffs’ money is “being held pending further action as a result of the 21 current litigation.” DCA, at 11:11. Witness Martinez testified that LULAC generally does not 22 charter then suddenly invalidate council charters, and if there is some sort of error, LULAC would 23 return the money and assist the council in getting chartered. TRX2, at 116:6-14, 127:15-24. 24 25 (...Continued)
TRX2, at 78:16-22. Under Robert’s Rules of Order, a “Point of Order” is called to “enforce rules.” Rules of Evidence.

26 http://www.robertsrules.org/motions.htm. Plaintiffs respectfully request that the court take judicial 27 notice of the cited source of Robert’s Rules of Order pursuant to rule 201(b)(2) of the Arizona 28
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1 Defendants adduced no evidence that they followed this customary practice with respect to the 2 Arizona councils. 3
More importantly, they presented no evidence that they communicated to Plaintiffs that they

4 were holding Plaintiffs’ money pending litigation or supporting the inconsistent position, given that 5 litigation was pending, that Plaintiffs’ need have only asked for a return of funds. Accordingly, 6 Defendants’ “pending litigation” assertion appears to be no more than a hastily drawn, after-the-fact 7 excuse for their failure to return Plaintiffs’ membership and registration fees. Moreover, Defendants 8 point to no provision in LULAC’s constitution allowing their keeping such funds pending litigation. 9 VII. 10 11
Defendants Cannot Show That They Are Not “Legally Responsible” for Reimbursement of Convention Expenses, Including Rental Vans. Defendants claim LULAC is not “legally responsible to reimburse” the class members for

12 the moneys expended on the vans. E.g. DCA, at 11:28-12:2. As “proof,” they assert that Luis Vera, 13 LULAC’s national general counsel, and Oscar Moran, president of LULAC council 4303, San 14 Antonio, Texas and husband of LULAC president Margaret Moran, did not testify and are not 15 parties to the litigation. DCA, 11:25-27. However, testimony and documentary evidence show that 16 Mr. Moran wrote two checks from his council’s checking account to pay for the vans. PCA, at 17 9:23-10:2 & portions of the transcripts cited therein. His payment may constitute an improper use 18 of his council’s funds (to pay expenses of delegates from another state). In any case, he arguably 19 was acting as an agent for his wife, Margaret Moran, president of defendant LULAC. Mr. Vera 20 offered to pay for the Tucson Councils’ food, lodging and transportation (rental vans) in Las Vegas 21 if they would support Ms. Moran. PCA, at 10:3-10 & portions of the transcripts cited therein. In 22 doing so in his role as national general counsel, he arguably was acting as an agent for LULAC. 23
“[T]hough an agent or apparent agent does not have power to bind his principal in a

24 particular transaction, the transaction may nevertheless subject the principal to liability or to the 25 loss of his interests where the principal misleads or fails to undeceive a third person; the principal 26 benefits from the transaction; or the subject matter is a negotiable instrument which has been 27 negotiated.” Land-Air, Inc. v. Parker, 103 Ariz. 1, 9, 435 P.2d 383, 847 (Ariz. 1967) (citing 28 Restatement (Second) Agency, § 141). Here, the transaction purported to benefit the principal: If
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1 the Tucson Councils supported Ms. Moran, she more likely would win and retain power at the helm 2 of LULAC. Moreover, no one in LULAC took any steps to “undeceive” the third party – i.e. class 3 members with whom LULAC cut its deal through agents Moran and Vera – until Defendants began 4 during the first evidentiary hearing to float the theory that Messrs. Vera and Moran were not agents 5 of LULAC when offering to or actually paying the Tucson Councils’ expenses. E.g. TRX1, at 6 63:12-15, 65:20-22, 101:6-10; see also TRX2, at 444:14-17. 7
In sum, contrary to Defendants’ assertions, they are “legally responsible” to reimburse the

8 appropriate class members under agency theory. See DCA, at 12:1-2. Even if they are not legally 9 responsible as a contractual matter, Defendants’ retaining those funds gives rise to various causes of 10 action asserted by Plaintiffs, including conversion, fraud, promissory estoppel, and breach of 11 implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing; or, in the alternative, ultra vires acts. 12 13 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28
CONCLUSION Based on the foregoing, Plaintiffs respectfully request that the Court grant all relieve

14 requested in their First Amended Complaint, to wit:
1. For an Order enjoining the election managed and controlled by defendants and LULAC leaders at LULAC’s Arizona Convention on June 8, 2013 at Pima Community College, Desert Vista Campus, Tucson, Arizona, or in the alternative declaring null and void said election; 2. For an Order enjoining the election managed and controlled by defendants and LULAC leaders at LULAC’s National Convention on June 22, 2013 at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada, or in the alternative declaring null and void said election; 3. For an Order estopping defendants from continuing to violate Arizona statutes and LULAC’s constitution and bylaws as set forth herein; 4. For an Order that defendants hold new elections in Arizona and new national elections in compliance with LULAC’s constitution and bylaws and in compliance with statues and this Court’s orders; 5. For an Order that defendants pay damages to plaintiffs according to proof; 6. For an Order that defendants pay punitive damages to plaintiffs;
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1 2 4 5 6 7

7. For reasonable attorney fees, costs and expenses of suit; and 8. For such other and further relief as the Court deems just, equitable and proper. Respectfully Submitted, LAW OFFICE OF CHRIS FORD Attorney for plaintiffs __/s Chris Ford__________ By: Chris Ford, Esq.

3 DATED this 4th day of April, 2014

8 ORIGINAL of the foregoing 9 E-FILED this 4th day of April, 2014 with: 10 Clerk of the Court 12 11 201 West Jefferson
Maricopa County Superior Court Phoenix, Arizona 85003

13 FOR Hon. Judge Michael Herrod 14 COPY of the foregoing E-MAILED 15
this 4th day of April, 2014 to:

16 Anthony Guajardo 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28

Counsel for defendants 17 Fax: 602-957-0801 __/s Chris Ford__________ By: Chris Ford

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