The opinion of the court was delivered by: BARBARA JONES, District Judge
Plaintiff moves for attorneys fees and costs incurred in
conducting a second day of deposition of Defendant company's
principal. For the reasons below, Plaintiff's motion is granted
On March 12, 2004, Plaintiff Cielo Creations, Inc. instituted
this trademark infringement action against Gao Da Trading Co.,
Ltd., and obtained from this Court an order to show cause and a
seizure order on the same date. On April 12, this Court entered,
on the parties' consent, a preliminary injunction order during
the pendency of this proceeding, which included a provision for
expedited discovery and an order for recall ("Consent Order").
Plaintiff wrote a letter to the Court, dated April 27, 2004,
detailing Defendant's repeated failures to respond to discovery
required by the Consent Order and to discovery requests subsequently propounded by Plaintiff, despite extensions of time
and Plaintiff's efforts to obtain the responses. By order dated
April 29, the Court directed Defendant to respond to the
outstanding discovery requests specified in Plaintiff's April 27
letter and scheduled a conference with the Court for May 5.
During the May 5 conference, and by order of the same date
memorializing the conference, the Court directed Defendant to
respond to all outstanding discovery requests in an expedited
manner, and to produce its principal, Jian-Feng Dai, for
deposition "noticed by counsel." (5/5/04 Order). The Court also
stated to Defendant's counsel, Habin Wang,
I can't impress upon you enough that some hard work
has to go into this in terms of trying to respond to
the Plaintiff's requests. You are going to have to
work with your client and try to help him find this
information. That's really his duty and your duty as
his lawyer in response to the court's order and, I
believe it was, a consent judgment in this
case. . . .
You  have a bunch of questions that have been put
to you [previously]. You can expect that those are
the questions [Plaintiff is] going to want answers
to. So I expect you to have your client prepared to
respond at the deposition under oath. OK?
Of course, we all know what being under oath means.
If you lie under oath there can be problems. So, I'd
like him to be as prepared as possible and I need
him to be forthcoming because that's his obligation
once he's under oath. . . .
(5/5/04 Tr. at 13-14) (emphasis added).
On May 17, 2004, Plaintiff noticed both a Rule 30(b)(6)
deposition and the deposition of Mr. Dai, pursuant to Rule 30(A)(1). The deposition was conducted on May 21.
Despite the Court's admonitions regarding the need to properly
prepare Mr. Dai for his deposition, Mr. Dai admitted that he did
not meet with his counsel to prepare for the deposition:*fn1
Q: Mr. Dai, what did you do to prepare for your
A: Nothing. I have not prepared anything.
Q: Did you meet with your attorney?
A: No, besides meeting with him this morning
downstairs. . . .
Q: So is it your testimony that you did not speak to
your attorney at all about this deposition today?
MR. WANG: I object to this line of questioning. . . .
Don't answer that.
A colloquy between the attorneys ensued, resulting in Mr.
Wang's objection on the grounds of privilege and his instruction
to his client not to answer the question. (Dai Dep. at 14-18). In
fact, in the course of five transcript pages, Mr. Wang instructed
his client not to answer a pending question on grounds of
attorney client privilege seven times, even though not one
question requested information concerning the contents of an
attorney-client communication. (Id. 14-19).*fn2
Defendant's attorney was also inappropriately argumentative
with the first translator brought in by Plaintiff to translate
Mr. Dai's Mandarin Chinese into English. Although the translator was certified to translate Mandarin, Defendant's attorney
continually argued with the interpreter and made speaking
objections. Plaintiff's counsel requested that Mr. Wang cease
making speaking objections and stated that all objections to
translation would be preserved. Mr. Wang responded "I can not
allow that." Mr. Wang suggested to Plaintiff's counsel that he
should have hired someone whose first language was Mandarin, and
went so far as make derogatory remarks about Hong Kong after the
translator stated that she was raised there. (Dai Dep. at 38-40).
MR. WANG: Hong Kong is a place in the past Century
was [sic] ruled by British.
INTERPRETER: So what? I learned Mandarin since I was
in 7th Grade.
MR. WANG: [Interpreter], I speak from my experience
here, in terms of language skills. People who are
educated in Hong Kong, they belittle Mandarin because
of the colonial culture.
Mr. Wang continued on this topic for about a minute longer, and
then the deposition went off the record. When it resumed,
Plaintiff's counsel stated that the interpreter refused to
continue the deposition and left. Plaintiff was able to obtain a
second Mandarin translator, but she was only available from 12:30
Plaintiff moves for attorneys fees and costs that it will incur
in taking a second day of deposition of Mr. Dai on the grounds
that this second day was necessitated by Mr. Dai's "lack of
preparedness" and "defendant's counsel's aggressive interference in the questioning" during the first day of the
deposition. (Pl's 5/26/04 Ltr. at 1).
After reviewing the videotapes and the transcript of Mr. Dai's
deposition, the Court finds Mr. Wang's conduct sanctionable under
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37, 28 U.S.C. § 1927 and the
Court's inherent ...