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Former Sands exec again headed for sanctions hearing with ex-employer

For the second time in less than a year, former Sands China Ltd. CEO Steven Jacobs is heading into a sanctions hearing with his one-time employer and affiliate Las Vegas Sands Corp.

A hearing Thursday focused on whether Sands had turned over the evidence that Jacobs has requested to back his argument that his wrongful termination case should be heard in Clark County District Court rather than be transferred to Macau.

Through the tens of thousands of emails and other documents at stake, Jacobs hopes to prove that Las Vegas Sands had practical control over the Macau operations, clearing the hurdle for local juris­diction.

After expressing concerns that Sands had not complied with previous orders to produce the documents, Clark County District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez set a hearing starting May 13 to decide whether to issue any punishment.

In September, she imposed a set of penalties, including a $25,000 fine, after company lawyers spent months telling her that Macau law precluded them from turning over electronically stored documents, only to find out that they also existed in Las Vegas.

Sands had turned over very little of what was requested and blacked out numerous sections of what it did, Jacobs’ attorney James Pisanelli said, continuing a stalling tactic. He pressed for the declaration of a default judgment, which would give Jacobs a win without further litigation.

“What I think we need to do to cure the poison, to fix the corruption that has occurred in this case, is simply give (Sands) what they have so obviously been asking of you for going on two-plus years now, a default judgment,” he said. “They would rather have that than the consequences of shining a light on their company.”

But Sands attorney Randall Jones said the company had spent more than $4 million to come up with nearly 200,000 pages of material.

“It is a massive amount of information from my perspective,” he said.

Jacobs’ strategy, he added, was to try to win the case at a preliminary stage rather than go through a full trial.

Contact reporter Tim O’Reiley at
toreiley@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5290.

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