JACKSON — Attorney General Jim Hood is asking a federal court to send the state of Mississippi’s lawsuit against Entergy back to state court.
In its recent ruling in Mississippi ex rel. Hood v. AU Optronics Corp., the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously agreed with Hood’s argument that cases brought by attorneys general to enforce their states’ laws should be heard in state court. The Court’s unanimous holding is significant because it reversed a decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit which said such cases should stay in federal court.
In December 2008, the Attorney General’s Office filed a lawsuit against Entergy on behalf of the state, charging the company with violations of the Mississippi Consumer Protection Act, the Mississippi Anti-Trust Act, fraud and related claims.
Entergy moved the state’s lawsuit from state court to federal court. Federal Judge Henry Wingate denied the state’s motion to remand the case to state court based on the Fifth Circuit’s decision. Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court held that the Fifth Circuit’s view of the law was incorrect. The state has now filed a motion with Wingate asking him to remand the case to state court in light of the Supreme Court’s unanimous opinion.
“Entergy has already admitted to overcharging Mississippi ratepayers for power,” said Hood. “As we argued in our motion to remand, this is a state issue and should be addressed in state court. We think it only fair, given this recent ruling clarifying the point, that we ask the Court to reconsider the remand denial.”
Hood has asked Entergy to turn over documents about its business practices to shed some light on the way in which it operates. Entergy has refused every request, according to Hood.