Tenant sued landlord, claiming landlord had illegally forced entry into her apartment and harassed her. Tenant also sued landlord’s lawyer, claiming he aided and abetted landlord in landlord’s wrongful acts. Held, the trial court erred in denying the lawyer’s Anti-SLAPP motion to strike. The only conduct the lawyer was accused of undertaking himself was protected activity undertaken in the course of representing the landlord in an unlawful detainer proceeding and plaintiff’s suit against the landlord. While the landlord’s acts may not have been privileged, the proper focus on the lawyer’s Anti-SLAPP motion was not on the landlord’s conduct (even though the lawyer was alleged to have aided it) but rather on the lawyer’s conduct that allegedly showed he had aided or conspired with the landlord. In this case, all of the lawyer’s alleged acts were protected under CCP 425.16(e). For the same reason, plaintiff could not show a probability of success on her suit against the lawyer. All of her evidence showing that the lawyer aided and abetted or conspired with the landlord consisted of communications that were privileged under Civ. Code 47(b).
California Court of Appeal, First District, Division 5 (Jones, P.J.); October 26, 2016; 2016 WL 6248437