Earlier this month we spilled far too much digital ink covering the defamation lawsuits filed by Microtech Knives, first against blogger Anthony Sculimbrene, for a piece he wrote about the Microtech Matrix/ZT0777/Kershaw Natrix kerfuffle, and then a separate suit was filed against KAI USA (parent company of ZT and Kershaw) and their Social Media Manager Kale Beyer for sharing/republishing that piece.
In my conversation with Microtech Lead Counsel Daniel Lawson, he reported that they had met with Sculimbrene as part of Pennsylvania’s mandated pre-trial arbitration, and that he believed both sides were close to a settlement. That has apparently come to pass, with what actually seems to be a quite positive outcome for the knife community in general – Mr. Sculimbrene, who is an attorney, will be volunteering 700 hours of service to AKTI – the trade group for the knife industry.
Sculimbrene has agreed to perform 700 hours of service for the knife community over 4 years, the majority of which will be donated by Microtech to the American Knife and Tool Institute (AKTI). Microtech General Counsel Daniel Lawson tells us Sculimbrene will be utilizing his background as a public defender to help AKTI. “I was contributing legal counsel for the AKTI for 15 years. But I don’t have a criminal law background. Hopefully, the entire industry can benefit from Sculimbrene’s legal experience and love of knives.”
Sculimbrene has also agreed to issue a retraction as part of the settlement. “I think Mr. Sculimbrene sincerely recognizes that what he said was untrue,” Lawson tells us. Sculimbrene will be meeting with Marfione to discuss how and when the retraction will go out. Lawson is clear that Sculimbrene will maintain full control of the content of the retraction. “It’s expected that he will make a retraction, but he’ll have to come up with that wording. We’re not putting words in his mouth.”
The lawsuit against KAI and Kale Beyer continues. We will update you as we learn more.