LOS ANGELES (CN) – The owner of two valuable violin bows claims an auctioneer sold his bows and kept the $240,000 from the sale. He claims the bows have “significantly increased in value” since the August 2007 sale.
In a Superior Court complaint, Zoran Stoyanovich says he gave Brompton’s Auctioneers in June 2007 a violin bow by Nicolaus Kittel and another by Francois Xavier Tourte 1800.
The U.K.-based auctioneer of fine instruments allegedly agreed to find Stoyanovich a buyer and give him the profits from the sale.
The owner claims Brompton’s came through on the first part, selling the bows to an Israeli man for more than $240,000, but then kept the money and made excuses for the missing funds.
Since the sale, Stoyanovich has asked Brompton’s employees Peter Horner and James Buchanan to transfer the money to him, the lawsuit states, but they claimed not to have it.
The bow owner claims Horner “tried to unilaterally change the terms of the agreement and wrote an email to Stoyanovich stating in part: ‘As soon as I have some money in our account I will count the deal done. As you well know from experience, Zoran, the deal isn’t done until the money is in the bank.'”
Stoyanovich says he replied by writing, “As far as I know the deal was legally binding w[h]en you received my written statement of accepting the client’s offer 10 days ago.”
Horner and Buchanan allegedly reassured him that he would get the money, but they kept making excuses for why it had not been transferred from the buyer’s account.
Stoyanovich claims the Israeli buyer clearly “paid Brompton’s for the bows,” but the auctioneer “never had the intent to transfer the sale proceeds and fraudulently induced (him) into the contract.”
He seeks actual and punitive damages for breach of contract, fraud, and breach of good faith and fair dealing.
He is represented by Marc Masters with Bird, Marella, Boxer, Wolpert, Nessim, Drooks & Lincenberg.