(CN) - Paris Hilton's brother Barron Hilton II claims the man he hit with his Mercedes in a 2008 drunk-driving incident cannot demand $880,000 on top of the $3,215 he accepted as restitution before winning a $3.5 million settlement.
In February 2008, the socialite's younger brother, then 18, pleaded no contest to driving under the influence after he hit Fernando Tellez with his Mercedes-Benz at a gas station in Malibu, Calif.
Hilton's attorney, Joseph M. Kar, said his client denied having driven and claimed amnesia, despite witnesses who placed him in the car, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The hotel heir, now 23, was sentenced to three years probation for the misdemeanor conviction. He also agreed to pay the former gas station attendant $2,465 for a chiropractic exam and treatments, and $750 for a neurological exam, according to court documents.
In January 2009, Tellez filed a personal injury lawsuit against Hilton and won a $4.5 million judgment at trial, which was later appealed and settled for $3.5 million.
Last November, Tellez asked the court to modify the 2008 restitution order to include more than $880,000 in attorney's fees for the personal injury claim.
The judge agreed that the original $3,215 payment "simply was not full restitution as it turns out" and scheduled a hearing with witnesses to recalculate the amount.
But in a petition filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court's appellate division, Hilton says the court lacks the authority to adjust restitution after his probation period ended on April 9, 2011.
He also questions why Tellez or his attorneys never challenged the restitution amount during the three years Hilton was on probation.
"[T]he notion that the court has the authority to recalculate the dollar amount of restitution, but no authority to order defendant to pay it, has no basis in law or logic," his petition states.
Hilton says Tellez is essentially asking for a "second civil judgment" in addition to the $3,215 Tellez agreed to, "conveniently skipping over the part of the law that requires an order to be made while the court has authority to do so."
The law allows a trial court to modify a restitution order "at any time during the term of probation" -- but not after that period has ended, Hilton argues.
"What is the point of the Legislature confirming the court's authority to modify restitution during the term of probation if the legislative purpose ... was to grant the court power to modify restitution orders "at any time," indefinitely, for the life of the parties and beyond?" he asks in the petition. (Original emphasis.)
"The trial court clearly lacks jurisdiction to make any order modifying the conditions of probation after probation expires," his petition states.
Hilton wants the court to deny Tellez's request for more money and to delay its hearing pending a ruling on Hilton's petition.
His attorneys on appeal are Jonathan Golden in Los Angeles and Richard Hutton of Hutton and Wilson in Pasadena.
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