PHILADELPHIA (CN) – Middleweight Bernard Hopkins claims attorneys Jeffrey Campolongo and Pasquale Colavita abused civil process in representing Vernon Williams, who demanded $301,000 for allegedly helping to train Hopkins for his September 2004 fight against Oscar de la Hoya.
Hopkins claims in state court that Williams, through Campolongo and Colavita, sued him for $310,000 on Aug. 31, 2005, alleging that Hopkins had agreed to pay Williams “a certain unspecified percentage of the income which he was to earn” for the de la Hoya fight. Hopkins claims that, through counsel, he had informed the defendants in March 2005 that he had fully paid Williams for his services. Hopkins’ complaint cites Vernon Williams’ Aug. 3, 2005 deposition in which Williams appears to state that he and Hopkins had no agreement about how much Williams was to be paid, nor about “percentages.”
Hopkins claims, “Attorney Campolongo attended and represented Williams at the deposition and obviously heard the testimony,” but continued to pursue the “obviously frivolous” lawsuit, despite being warned that doing so “was actionable.”
He claims the defendants continued to press the lawsuit “in spite of their knowledge that the averments of the Williams Complaint were untrue,” and that this cost Hopkins “a great deal of money in legal fees” and “caused him emotional distress.”
Hopkins says that after Williams’ lawsuit was dismissed on April 5, 2007, the defendants appealed the summary judgment, costing him more money and distress, until the appeal too was dismissed, on April 1, 2008.
Hopkins demands punitive damages. He is represented by Arnold Joseph of Blue Bell, Pa.
(Hopkins defeated de la Hoys and retained his middleweight title.)