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May 28, 2004

Press Contact: Kirston Fortune, UT Law, (512) 471.7330, or Allegra Young, UT Law, 512-471-7330

Jury Trial of King Foundation Execs Begins on June 1, Live Webcast Available

WHERE: Eidman Courtroom, Connally Center, UT Law
WHEN: Trial begins 8 a.m. on Tuesday, June 1, 2004 (Trial will last approx. two weeks.)
WHO: Courtroom proceedings are open to the public
MEDIA: An audio/video feed will be available in CCJ 3.302 on the third floor of the Connally Center.

ARCHIVED WEBCAST (streaming video)

AUSTIN, Texas — A jury trial is scheduled to start Tuesday, June 1, at the UT Law School over whether certain executives of the Carl B. and Florence King Foundation breached their fiduciary duties or committed fraud by using money meant for charity on unreasonable salaries and perks.

Travis County Probate Judge Guy Herman, a 1977 UT Law graduate, will preside over the civil trial that is expected to last for two weeks. Twelve jurors and one alternate juror were selected on Thursday, May 27.

Judge Herman noted that the King Foundation is not related to the King Ranch, but was started by a Dallas family during their lifetime to do philanthropic good deeds. The family intended that the foundation continue as a charity for this purpose upon their death.

There will be no cameras allowed in the courtroom. A room with an audio/video feed will be available for the press in CCJ 3.302 (third floor of the Law School's Connally Center). The trial can also be viewed online via a live Webcast. The public – including Law School students, staff and faculty – is invited to attend the trial.

The Travis County Probate Court provided the following synopsis for Attorney General Greg Abbott, on Behalf of the Public Interest in Charity and The Carl B. and Florence E. King Foundation vs. Carl B. Yeckel, Thomas W. Vett, and William Jordan, (Cause No. 77,995-A in the Probate Court Number One of Travis County, Texas):

The trial involves a charity, the Carl B. and Florence E. King Foundation, which has its place of business in Dallas, and was established in 1966 as a Texas nonprofit corporation. The purpose of the Foundation is to make direct contributions to aid and assist a variety of charitable organizations and to provide scholarship funds, directly or indirectly, to worthy or indigent students.

The issues in the case are whether the compensation and benefits paid to Carl Yeckel, the former King Foundation President, and Thomas Vett, the former corporate Secretary of the Foundation, were unreasonable and excessive and resulted from a breach of their fiduciary duties to the Foundation and/or fraud. Also at issue is whether William Jordan, a former Director and lawyer for the Foundation, breached his duties to the Foundation in his capacities of director and/or lawyer, and whether his breaches, if any, caused damages to the Foundation.

Counter-claims have been filed by the Defendants, including a counterclaim by Yeckel against the Foundation for defamation. Vett's counterclaims include retaliatory discharge, enforcement of his retirement contract, and promissory estoppel.

Plaintiffs' Attorneys:

Susan Staricka, Jan Soifer and Susan Kidwell are graduates of The University of Texas School of Law. Soifer, a 1982 graduate, has been a member of the adjunct faculty of the Law School since 1992, teaching in the trial advocacy program. Staricka is a 1985 graduate and Kidwell is a 2001 graduate.

Defendants' Attorneys:

Roy Q. Minton is a 1961 graduate of The University of Texas School of Law. David Grant Crooks is a 2000 graduate of UT Law.

Streaming Video of the King Foundation Trial in Windows Media Format
The player is included with Microsoft Windows, but you can also
download a free copy.

Video Name Description
King6-1am - Opening Statements
King6-1pm-1 Plaintiff's Witnesses Begin
1) Todd Amacher
2) Frank Sommerville
King6-1pm-2 2) Frank Sommerville
King6-2am-1 3) Carl L. Yeckel
King6-2am-2 3) Carl L. Yeckel
King6-2pm-1 3) Carl L. Yeckel
King6-2pm-2 4) John Balthazar (via video deposition)
King6-2pm-3 5) Dan Junkin (via video deposition)
King6-3am-1 5) Dan Junkin (via video deposition)
6) Thomas Vett
King6-3am-2 6) Thomas Vett
King6-3pm-1 7) Charles Quatt
King6-3pm-2 7) Charles Quatt
8) Arden Grover (via video deposition)
King6-4am-1 9) James Smith
King6-4am-2 9) James Smith
10) Susan Staricka
King6-4am-3 -Evidentiary Hearing with Carl Yeckel
King6-7am-1 Defense Witnesses Begin
-Hearing over the hiring of Prof. Goode by Defense
11) John Martin Davis
King6-7am-2 11) John Martin Davis
King6-7pm-1 11) John Martin Davis
King Foundation Trial
Streaming Video Breakdown
King6-7pm-2 11) John Martin Davis
-Hearing with Prof. Goode
12) William Jordan (via video deposition)
King6-8am-1 12) William Jordan (via video deposition)
King6-8am-2 13) J.C. Montgomery
14) John W. Davis
King6-8pm-1 15) Robert Wilson
16) Michael J. Ahearn
King6-8pm-2 17) Carl L. Yeckel
King6-9am-1 17) Carl L. Yeckel
King6-9am-2 17) Carl L. Yeckel
King6-9pm-1 17) Carl L. Yeckel
18) Tab H. Keener
19) Caroline Mott (reading of deposition)
20) Al Jenkins (reading of deposition)
21) Kevin Marshall
Conclusion of Testimony
King6-9pm-2 -Hearings on Jury Charge
King6-10am -Hearings on Jury Charge
King6-10pm-1 -Hearings on Jury Charge
King6-10pm-2 -Reading of Jury Charge
-Plaintiff's Closing Arguments
King6-10pm-3 -Defense's Closing Arguments
-Plaintiff's Rebuttal Argument
King6-11 Reading of Jury's Verdict
King6-14 Arguments and the Jury's Verdict on the Charge of Fraud