FRAUD I BREACH OF FIDUCIARY – Jury awards Brees $6 million in Jewelry Fraud Lawsuit
June 24, 2019
OnFriday June 21, 2019, after two days of deliberations in a fraud lawsuit, the San Diego Superior Court Jury awarded the Brees family $6.1 million in damages holding a local jeweler liable for defrauding the plaintiffs and breaching an oral contract between the parties.
In closing argument the plaintiffs’ attorney asserted that the defendant held himself out to be a “colored diamond expert”; and further represented that he would serve as a quasi broker, helping the plaintiffs acquire colored diamonds as investments which were expected to appreciate in value. In creating this oral contract the plaintiff asserted that a fiduciary duty was owed. The plaintiffs subsequently alleged that the defendant breached the contract, defrauded the plaintiffs and breached the fiduciary by selling these investments to the plaintiffs at retail pricing.
The defendant’s position was that the plaintiffs, were for all intents and purposes, retail customers, as such no fraud existed. Specifically the defendant contended that a fiduciary duty was never owed because no such oral contract existed between the parties. The defendant testified that the term “investment” came up five times over the course of a 12 + year relationship. Defense was adamant that the relationship between the parties never exceeded retailor-customer. Lastly, the defense emphasized that each acquisition had a coinciding retail receipt creating a “written contract” and confirming a retail purchase.
After observing this fraud trial, both parties had valid points and convincing arguments.
If you or someone you know has fallen victim to a fraud scheme, investment fraud or have any questions as to investor rights, we encourage you to call our offices today at 619-432-5145 for a free consultation with one of our Fraud Attorneys and Investment Lawyers.