The trial in Xcoal Energy & Resources v. Bluestone Energy Sales Corp., C.A No. 18-819-LPS (D. Del.) was adjourned this morning following receipt by the parties of an "anonymous letter." The trial had started yesterday, after the Court previously overruled Xcoal's due process objections to a remote trial.
All of the discussion of the letter was at sidebar, so its contents are not yet public. But it must be something interesting!
The parties had asked for a sidebar immediately after opening statements yesterday. Counsel mentioned that the situation is like "something out of a John Grisham novel."
At the sidebar, they read the "anonymous letter" into the record, and both parties opposed "proceeding with trial as scheduled as if this letter were never received."
It seems that the letter has something to do with non-party witnesses. According to the Court, plaintiff stated that "ethical issues require the letter to be shared with non-party witnesses" so that they can "potentially retain counsel."
After multiple sidebars and breaks yesterday and this morning, Chief Judge Stark adjourned the trial so that the parties can share the letter with the witnesses and determine whether "there is going to be an issue as a result of the letter with the witnesses testifying at this trial," and also to take briefing from the parties by Monday on what the next steps are.
(Note that all of the quotes in this post are based on handwritten notes, and may not reflect the speaker's exact wording.)