An Extortion Lawsuit

Lawyer Anthony Russo of the Florida-based Russo Firm, says his client Cynthia Kelly and “not less than 100” and perhaps even “thousands” of others have suffered horrific emotional damage.

It seems that seasonal versions of Hershey’s Reese’s chocolate-covered peanut butter candies variously depicted pumpkin shapes with the candy’s peanut butter filling showing through eyes and a mouth carved into the chocolate or football shapes with laces similarly carved. On unpeeling the wrapper, though, shocker of shockers, the chocolate coverings were intact. The bodice-ripping. The emotional rending, the fall-to-the-floor sobbing paroxisms (I exaggerate, but not by much). Lawyer Russo is suing Hershey over the riptide of emotion the nefarious company has so callously caused.


Omitted in this editorial is that the Reese’s packaging also depicts a bite already taken out of the candy, exposing the peanut butter filling inside the chocolate coating—and that that depiction has been there for years.

Did the “plaintiffs” not expect to unwrap this candy and see a bite actually already taken?

Not only should the plaintiffs be sharply sanctioned for this frivolous suit, the lawyer bringing it and the firm employing him (yes, it’s his firm, but still, the firm) should be especially sharply sanctioned for being a party to this frivolous suit. Lawyers, especially, should know better.

Hershey should refuse to settle and instead crushingly defeat the lawyer and plaintiffs in open court, taking no prisoners. Let it not be over quickly, the plaintiffs and lawyer will not enjoy it, and Hershey is not their patsy. $5 million or more that the plaintiffs want and of which Russo wants his cut? Sounds about right to me. That’s what the plaintiffs, the lawyer, and the law firm should be required to pay Hershey.

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