- The Washington Times - Sunday, July 23, 2006

A dozen employees of a District-based court-reporting company that has transcribed the official business of congressional committees, NASA and many federal agencies are dropping a bid to force the firm into bankruptcy.

The Miller Reporting Co. Inc. employees filed an involuntary bankruptcy petition against the company in June seeking about $12,000 in unpaid wages.

Last week, a credit card company filed a claim in the same case for more than $80,000, including charges related to a convention for specialists on the assassination of President Kennedy, held in the District in May.

The convention was hosted by company President Paul Kuntzler, a vocal proponent of the theory that the government covered up the Kennedy assassination.

He said Friday that the expenses for the convention, at the Willard InterContinental Washington hotel, neither drained company finances nor dipped into the employee payroll.

Mr. Kuntzler said the temporary cash-flow problems were caused by an estimated $1.5 million in estate taxes that he was forced to pay. He has run the company since the 2004 death of its founder and his longtime partner, Steven Miller.

“I’ve resolved everything,” he said of the company’s debts.

According to the American Express claim, the company incurred separate charges at the Willard for $17,167 and $7,350.

However, Mr. Kuntzler said the company wasn’t paying for his interest in the assassination.

“That’s all my own money,” he said.

Mr. Kuntzler said he has paid the money owed to employees and is paying off the debt on his company-issued American Express card, and he expects the bankruptcy case to be dismissed.

He said some of the employees had left and some have returned to the company.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge S. Martin Teel Jr. is expected to rule within weeks on a motion by the employees to dismiss the case.

Michael R. Murphy, an attorney for the employees, said his clients no longer are interested in liquidating the company because Mr. Kuntzler paid the wages. An attorney who filed the American Express claim could not be reached for comment Friday.

Filing an involuntary bankruptcy petition is “fairly uncommon,” Mr. Murphy said.

In such cases, the creditors, not the debtors, file the petition. If a judge grants the petition, a company can be liquidated to pay off its debt to the creditors.

The Web site www.millerreporting.com states the company has 50 certified court reporters and transcribers and has been in business since 1960.

The site also states that the transcription company has covered “many high-profile events, including those of President Nixon, Monica Lewinsky, Vernon Jordan, Sidney Blumenthal, John Ashcroft and Microsoft Corp.”

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