TX Sen. Wants Sanctions for NFL Star’s Lawyers

     DALLAS (CN) — A Texas state senator suing Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant for trashing a rental home is demanding sanctions against Bryant’s attorneys for accusing him of stealing $500,000 from their client.
     State Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas, said Wednesday that Bryant’s counterclaim was filed “in bad faith and without reasonable inquiry” into its validity.
     West says the disputed $200,000 and $300,000 payments to him were received in trust “to settle lawsuits at Bryant’s request and such settlement payments were in fact made to litigants” who sued Bryant.
     West says that $475,000 of the money Bryant wired him was paid to settle a lawsuit by third party Eleow Hunt, with West keeping $25,000 in legal fees with Bryant’s consent.
     “In total, West & Associates assisted Bryant in approximately 9 matters over the course of approximately 4.5 years, in only three of which West was the acting attorney, and in total for which West & Associates received $113,024.81, including actual expenses,” the 20-page motion for sanctions states.
     “There is no evidence that the acts that Bryant attributes directly to West in fact occurred, because they did not,” the motion adds.
     West sued Bryant in June, claiming the 6,400 square foot home in a gated community in DeSoto that he rented to Bryant for over two years was left in a “state of serious disrepair, littered with trash and feces, missing blinds and shutters, with cracked windows and blackened carpeting.”
     Several photographs provided with the complaint show large dark stains in the carpet, abandoned furniture, piles of trash and cracked windows.
     West says that after his second attempt to collect reimbursement for the damage in May, Bryant’s counsel threatened to file a separate and unrelated lawsuit against him.
     In answering the lawsuit, Bryant said West’s claims are barred “by the doctrine of unclean hands” and that any damages are “reduced by a set-off.”
     West says that days after he filed the lawsuit, Bryant texted him and said “I wish you [had] thought about it before you thought it was a smart idea to go after me.”
     According to screenshots provided in West’s motion, Bryant said “it’s too late” to talk about the damage done to West’s home.
     “How can you forget about all of the shit y’all put me through,” Bryant is said to have texted. “I left that shit along [sic] because I wanted to forget about it. I no longer have sympathy for y’all people. Just know you started this.”
     Bryant’s attorneys did not immediately respond to an email message requesting comment Thursday morning.

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