NEWARK, N.J. (AP) The clock is running down on a lawsuit by a New York Jets season-ticket holder that seeks millions from the New England Patriots and coach Bill Belichick for "deceiving customers" by videotaping opponents' signals.
Carl J. Mayer filed the lawsuit in September that maintained the Patriots' secret videotaping violated the contractual "expectations and rights" of Jets ticket holders "to observe an honest match played in compliance with all laws and regulations."
But Mayer, a lawyer in Princeton known for filing legal actions against New Jersey politicians, has done virtually nothing since to advance the litigation, which sought class-action status.
Records at U.S. District Court in Newark indicate Mayer's last action was a failed effort to serve the defendants with a copy of the complaint in October.
As a result, the court clerk advised Mayer last week that the lawsuit would be dismissed June 30 unless he gives a federal judge a reason it should continue. The clerk's notice cited a court rule allowing dismissal if no proceeding had occurred for 120 days four months. No action had been taken for eight months.
Mayer insisted Thursday that he does not intend to abandon the case, which he filed with a frequent collaborator, lawyer Bruce I. Afran.
"There's another angle in the litigation we're going to pursue," Mayer said. "We haven't dropped the ball."
He declined to give details, but said it relates to the efforts of Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, the Judiciary Committee's ranking Republican and a critic of the NFL's response to what has been called "spygate."
"He (Specter) uncovered additional facts regarding videotaping. We've been working to incorporate those with regard to other defendants," Mayer said. "Could we have pressed on earlier? Yeah, but tactically, we are doing what we need to be doing."
The Patriots were caught taping signals by Jets coaches, a violation of league rules, during the opening game of the 2007 season. New England won 38-14.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell fined Belichick $500,000 and the team $250,000 for that incident, and stripped New England of a first-round draft choice.