A hedge fund manager has been awarded $203 million in damages after being framed by former neighbor Peter Nygard.
Disgraced fashion mogul Nygard accused Louis Bacon of arson, insider trading and ties to the KKK.
The decades-long feud began after a dispute over a driveway Nygard and Bacon had in common.
A billionaire hedge fund has been awarded $203 million after a court in New York ruled he was defamed by his former Bahamas neighbor Peter Nygard after a decades-long feud sparked by a shared driveway.
Nygard, a disgraced fashion mogul who faces multiple sex trafficking charges, has been ordered by a New York court-appointed judge to pay Louis Bacon, founder of Moore Capital Management, the largest defamation settlement in the state’s history after he had made several wild accusations.
Clashes between Bacon and Nygard began when the two neighbors were in the gated community of Lyford Cay in Clifton Bay, Bahamas.
Bacon complained that Nygard, who used one of Bacon’s driveways, was holding several disruptive parties at his home, while Nygard accused Bacon of thwarting his fire-remediation plans, according to the Financial Times.
This gradually escalated into increasingly brutal attacks by Canadian fashion mogul Nygard, with Bacon’s lawyers saying he personally spent $15 million in a smear campaign against Bacon.
In the first complaint, filed in 2015, Bacon said Nygard hired journalists to spread conspiracies about the hedge fund manager, including that Bacon participated in insider trading, that he was connected to the death of his property manager, that he responsible for a fire on Nygard’s property and that he was involved with the Ku Klux Klan.
“Nygard and his cronies have claimed on several occasions that my 19th- and 18th-century ancestors, whom of course I never knew, were associated with racist groups or slave owners,” Bacon wrote at the time.
According to FT, former US District Judge Layn Phillips said the “overwhelming” and “truly stunning” nature of the evidence presented justifies the record sum.
“Each of these would have been a serious attack on his character; the combination of all four portrayed him as a malefactor of the highest order,” the umpire said in his ruling, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Attorneys told the court that Bacon spent more than $50 million in legal fees to bring multiple defamation lawsuits against Nygard.
The settlement is a staggering sum for a single defamation case. In comparison, Fox News recently settled its mammoth defamation case brought by Dominion for a comparable $787.5 million.
Nygard was accused by the Justice Department in 2020 of using his property in the Bahamas to host “pamper parties” targeting dozens of victims. The allegations wiped out his business empire.
Nygard’s attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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