Jane Dueker has totally taken money from the payday loan industry. She just forgot

  • Photo by Danny Wicentowski
  • Jane Dueker.

Over the summer, Jane Dueker called a Missouri attorney general candidate “dispshit” because he apparently did not know his name was on a US Supreme Court file. And she probably regrets her wording, because it turns out she’s guilty of a similar sin – and now the bastard is on the other foot.

A well-known lobbyist and lawyer in St. Louis, Dueker has spent the past few weeks pushing back against accusations that she is defending the payday loan industry. The complaints revolve around Dueker’s decision to file a ethics complaint against St. Louis Alderman Cara Spencer, who both have day jobs to fight predatory lenders and supports two board bills that would crack down on their practices. (After a review, the Missouri Ethics Commission fired the complaint earlier this month.)

More and more and more again, Dueker insisted it was not in Big Payday’s pocket. In fact, she claimed, she had never took money from industry – not a penny.

Whoops ! As it turns out, Dueker forgot that she not only took industry money as a lawyer, but it was for a case that went all the way to the Missouri Supreme Court.

This important little detail was discovered by St. Louis Post-Expedition columnist Tony Messenger, whose column opens by describing the legal battle between Title Lenders Inc. (also known as Missouri Payday Loans) and a woman who had borrowed money under a contract that a local judge later called ‘”inadmissible”. Title Lenders Inc. took the case to the state’s highest court in 2012, where it ultimately won.

Dueker was part of the legal team that replaced Title Lenders Inc.

“I totally forgot about that,” Dueker admitted to Messenger. She clarified that she is not currently taking any money from predatory lenders. She was just doing that.

In the Messenger column, Dueker also admitted that she discussed the ethics complaint against Spencer with Lou Hamilton. Hamilton is currently employed as a lobbyist for a consortium of payday lenders – a group that includes Title Lenders Inc. However, Dueker said Hamilton “had nothing to do with” the complaint itself.

Amid the backlash in Messenger’s column on Tuesday, Dueker defended herself on Twitter by noting that her work on the Title Lenders Inc. case in 2012 was limited as she was only a minor member of the legal team.

Law? Who can even remember great legal victories that occurred four or five years ago? You don’t have to be a jerk to forget little things like this.

And hey, it’s not like Dueker is involved in winning a different Missouri Supreme Court case in 2012, and she clearly wanted everyone to know how awesome it was back then …

Oh. Well. Perhaps the lesson here is that some Supreme Courts win – like those who defend a morally odious industry that prey on the poor – aren’t that rewarding after all.

Follow Danny Wicentowski on Twitter at @D_Towski. Email the author at [email protected]

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