Poplar Grove, IL. (ECWd) –
After failing at the primary election in his bid for reelection as Poplar Grove Mayor, and losing the election for Precinct Committeeman, Owen Costanza decided to extract revenge on a local reporter, the winner of the Mayoral race, and others who may have assisted in the campaign, by filing a lawsuit claiming, among other things, defamation. The suit was based on a flyer distributed to local voters.
His problem was the information contained in the anti-Costanza campaign flyer was all truthful (see this article and read the Court Transcripts where he admits to all of it).
Yesterday, Judge Balogh issued his 16-page Order dismissing Costanza’s lawsuit in its entirety with prejudice (which means he cannot file another one using this information).
From the Order dismissing the case:
- Starting on page 11: 1995 Costanza pled guilty to filing a false police report – It is undisputed that this statement is true
- 1999 Costanza was terminated by Liberty Insurance for fraud and misrepresentation – Objectively verified by administrative records obtained through FOIA
- 1999 Costanza pled guilty to writing bad checks – It is undisputed that this statement is true
- 2000 Costanza suffered a home foreclosure – It is undisputed that this statement is true
- 2000 Costanza completed a bankruptcy filing – It is undisputed that this statement is true
- 2007 Costanza pled guilty to drunk driving – It is undisputed that this statement is true
- 2008 State of Wisconsin denied Costanzas request for an Insurance License due to a false application – Objectively verified by administrative records obtained through FOIA
- 2010 State of Indiana fined Costanza for false application and revoked his insurance license – Objectively verified by administrative records obtained through FOIA
- 2014 and 2015 Illinois Department of Insurance investigated numerous complaints by insurance customers, past terminations, criminal history, unlawful withdraws, fines and discipline from Wisconsin and Indiana, Illinois revokes insurance business license for major violations, and the Illinois Department of Insurance fined $30,000 for multiple repeat violations – Objectively verified by administrative records obtained through FOIA
“The sting of the flyer is that Costanza has engaged in professional misrepresentation and fraud, within the ordinary meaning of the word, in his capacity as an insurance producer. In his personal life, he has pled guilty to at least three misdemeanor criminal offenses and filed a personal bankruptcy. It is verifiably true that Costanza has a criminal record. It is inarguably true that three different states delayed, withheld or revoked professional licensure as an insurance producer as a result of his repeated misrepresentations. In Illinois, he was administratively fined $30,000.00 for repeated instances of misrepresentation and mishandling of client funds. Given Costanza’s record of misfeasance, malfeasance and nonfeasance in both his professional and personal lives, the court finds that no reasonable jury could find that characterizations of that record as criminal or as involving insurance fraud exaggerate the substantial truth of defendants’ statements. This is especially true in the insurance industry which is so heavily regulated because it is susceptible to fraud.”
“Therefore, the court finds that the statements made by the defendants in regard to Costanza were and are privileged because they concern a matter of public interest and involve a public person. The statements are, as discussed above, factual in nature and substantially true.”
“Summary Judgment granted in favor of defendants and against RMS Insurance Services d/b/a Flanders Insurance Agency, and Owen G. Costanza. The entire amended verified complaint is dismissed with prejudice.”
Costanza is currently a candidate for Trustee of the Village of Poplar Grove, but his petitions have been objected to and the Petition Objection Hearing has yet to be completed.
Costanza is still passing himself off as Village President even after losing the primary several years ago. It’s almost as if he doesn’t want to admit defeat.COSTANZA ORDER