Dragon 8 drops Downey lawsuit

Hong Kong auction house Dragon 8 has said it has dropped its defamation lawsuit against authentication expert Maureen Downey.

Gil-Lempert-Schwarz-Dragon-8-630x417In an email to the drinks business, Dragon 8 founder, Gil Lempert-Schwarz, (pictured) said: “We have decided to file a dismissal of the lawsuit against Ms. Downey without prejudice. When proceeding with a serious defamation case of this nature, one has to weigh the costs of the process, the considerable time involved, and the potential award for the damages caused.

“Upon our investigation, we find it likely that zero funds are available to the defendant to pay for any judgment against her. We have therefore chosen not to pursue this matter any further at this point in time. However, we do not waiver in our original claims of defamation and we remain firmly committed to our business and our clients.”

Downey was threatened with the lawsuit late last year in the wake of Dragon 8’s first auction, which was plagued by accusations of fabricated provenance and fakes.

Dragon 8 claimed that after the November auction, Downey made “false, defamatory, disparaging and highly damaging” statements about Lempert-Schwarz and its business.

Although the lawsuit was filed in Las Vegas towards the end of last year Downey was never actually served. Downey and her legal team motioned to move the suit to a federal court as a more “appropriate” venue to hear the complaint due to the two parties living and working in different states (Downey in California and Lempert-Schwarz in Nevada), after which Lempert-Schwarz and Dragon 8 reportedly dropped the suit.

The full version of the story including Downey’s comment can be found here.

Downey was been contacted for comment but was not immediately available when this article was first published.

UpdateThis article has been modified since its original publication.

4 Responses to “Dragon 8 drops Downey lawsuit”

  1. Chris Blum says:

    Did you take the time to ask Ms Downey about this? It seems that your are just printing a Dragon 8 press release without checking the facts.

    • Rupert Millar says:

      I am well aware of he facts surrounding this case having covered it since it arose last year. On receiving the email from Dragon 8 I contacted Ms Downey but due to the difference in time zones between California and Europe she was not immediately available for comment.

      I have subsequently heard from her and am expecting a statement from her attorney which will be published forthwith.

  2. Charles says:

    You need to do more research on Gil Lempert-Schwarz. He was a supposed expert on wine. He looked like a fool when put on stand for the convicted felon Kurniawan.

  3. el says:

    Dear Rupert Millar.

    You may want to update your article with some of the recent findings by Sr. Don Cornwell

    http://www.wineberserkers.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=121669&start=400#p1944281

    It would even be fascinating if you would be able outreach to Mr. Lempert-Schwarz’s for his input 🙂

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