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Court Dismisses Wynn Diamond Case

May 24, 2013 12:56 PM   By Ricci Dipshan
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RAPAPORT... The U.S District Court of the Central District of California granted a motion for summary judgment in the ''Wynn Diamond'' case to defendant Brett Stettner. The plaintiff, Diane Breitman, the owner of Queen of Diamonds of Los Angeles, sued Stettner in February 2012 for damages stemming from alleged fraud and breach of contract in the proposed sale of a $23.5 million, 230.17-carat, H, VS1 stone owned by the plaintiff's client, Steve Wynn.

Breitman was to sell the diamond in the manner in which she sold it to Wynn, according to the judge's summary, but there was no contract. Stettner, a diamond dealer from Harris County, Texas, offered to buy the diamond and submitted a deposit but then negotiations broke down. Breitman then sued Stettner for breach of contract, interference with contractual relations, interference with prospective business advantage, fraud and intentional infliction of emotional distress, for damages totaling $1.41 million.

However, the court found that Breitman had an insufficient claim to sue the defendant. In one example,  the court determined that “there is no contractual relationship between parties,” and that the “plaintiff does not have standing to bring a claim for breach of contract.”

According to the court, which cited testimony by  Wynn, Breitman did not have the authority to enter into legal agreement with Stettner on behalf of Wynn or his company Wynn Macau, for while she was the “exclusive agent of the Wynn Diamond, that did not suggest that the scope of plaintiff’s agency permitted her to enter into contracts on behalf of Mr. Wynn.”  The court added that Breitman had no ability to bind Wynn Macau and that  Wynn Macau was party to no agreement with  Stettner.

The charges of interference with prospective business advantage and fraud were also dismissed, as Breitman failed to prove any intentional acts by Stettner that were designed to disrupt Breitman’s role as the seller of the Wynn Diamond, according to the judge. And the plaintiff failed to offer any evidence that supported assertions of fraud.  

“Plaintiff had over two years to conduct discovery. The fact that plaintiff was incapable of finding any evidence directed to any material fact during the course of discovery, perhaps, shows that the case lacks merit,” according to the court.

The court also threw out the claim of emotional distress, noting that  Breitman “testified that after the Wynn Diamond was taken off the market, she did not see a doctor or a therapist for any resulting emotional problems and had experienced no physiological effect from the alleged devastation.”
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Tags: Brett Stettner, Ricci Dipshan, Wynn Diamond
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