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GoldenPlate

Violinist sues auctioneer over sale of bows

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Will, have a google... the man has unsuccessfully tried to sue his insurers, an art capital fund and Bromptons in London and Californian courts, and I think that this Evening Standard article is just too diffuse in content to have any meaning. This report following an earlier attempt to sue sheds some light on the affair. I don't think that the administrator would approve of "trial by maestronet". http://www.maineanti...ex.html?id=2121

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doesnt change the fact that bromptons had the bows, recommended the third party, and then relinquished the bows before receiving payment, pray tell how, except for their expensive lawyers, does that get bromptons off the hook??

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I notice the article from the Maine Antique Digest is from 2007, and the suit had been dropped; but the Standard article is current, so I guess some form of suit is back on.

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The Evening Standard article (6 Dec 2012) reads:

"American violinist Zoran Stoyanovich has issued High Court proceedings against Brompton’s Auctioneers accusing it of releasing the items without collecting the proceeds."

Notwithstanding that the poor man hasn't got his money after five years, I wonder if this specific accusation has any merit. The defendant will presumably argue that sending things on approval is a necessary part of the trade, well understood by the plaintiff, and is unlikely to be the point of law upon which a successful settlement can be reached. Remember that this was a private sale.

Worth watching this closely, as it may have significant implications on a dealer's liability if "sending on approval" and the buyer (or their agent in this case) defaulting is interpreted as "releasing the items without collecting the proceeds". At the very least, may be worth ensuring a water-tight approval contract instead of a gentleman's agreement! The third party seems to have a lot to answer for, whereever liability lies.

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If the seller hasnt received money then its theft.Not a trivial matter considering the money involved.

Should be easy to find out if the buyer made a money transfer.

I think in the US it would be conversion on the part of the prospective buyer, a civil matter, unless intent to defraud can be clearly demonstrated. I'm not a lawyer, but have had some experience in these matters. I also don't know how far English and American common law have diverged in the past couple of hundred years.

I also know how hard it gets to collect across borders and cultures.

I wish the plaintiff the best of luck. On the face of it, Brompton's would seem to have been negligent but if you've ever been part of an event that's been written up in the papers, you've probably learned never to take anything you read in the papers at face value.

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If the seller hasnt received money then its theft.Not a trivial matter considering the money involved.

Should be easy to find out if the buyer made a money transfer.

"illegal borrowing" if one can prove there was no intention to pay. Willingly given = not theft

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Despite all the legal pitfalls and jargon, as far as im concerned its still theft. No different than going to your local Ferrari garage ,taking one for a test drive and disappearing into the sunset.

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Despite all the legal pitfalls and jargon, as far as im concerned its still theft. No different than going to your local Ferrari garage ,taking one for a test drive and disappearing into the sunset.

Very different : they gave you the Ferrari to test drive not to sell or take home. I'm really not looking forward to the day when I could be prosecuted because I didn't pay the CC. That would be the same isn't it ?

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How could Bromptons release anything before they securely had the money? Private sale or not? If they expected to get a commission, I would think they'd be held responsible. It isn't the seller's fault they let those valuable bows go before it cleared, right? Clearly the buyer is a crook and this is theft, but...I can see where the seller has a point of contention. If there was no commission involved, then that might be a different story...you would think somebody, an insurance company, needs to step up here...

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Very different : they gave you the Ferrari to test drive not to sell or take home. I'm really not looking forward to the day when I could be prosecuted because I didn't pay the CC. That would be the same isn't it ?

No difference whatsoever in my mind ,you take the car without taking back or paying =you steal the bows without returning or paying= theft.

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Obviously these bows have been stolen, the question is who took them.

According to the longer report (I wouldn't eat Fish & Chips off the Evening Standard), the owner appointed an agent to sell the bows to a possible buyer on his behalf, and authorized Bromptons to release the bows to the agent. It seems that the seller can't get to the absconding agent, and is therefore suing the next best thing.

But this is all slightly pointless speculation.

Auction houses, violin shops and dealers release items on trial all the time - that's how things are sold.

btw this was a private treaty sale, not an auction ....

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Very different : they gave you the Ferrari to test drive not to sell or take home. I'm really not looking forward to the day when I could be prosecuted because I didn't pay the CC. That would be the same isn't it ?

Not really different: the key issue in both cases is not how far or to what location it was taken, but that it was neither returned nor paid-for.

I would think that Bromptons would have a fiduciary responsibility in the matter, but it seems that these days there's an increasing number of opportunities for the wealthy to steal from the rest of us without committing an indictable crime.

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http://www.maineanti...ex.html?id=2121

Maybe read this again ....!

The bows were handed over to an agent with the approval of the seller - in fact this agent was authorized by the seller. The agent then did a deal with a buyer, which included a valuable violin. The buyer then withheld some money because of a crack in the violin which came to light after the sale.

Hmmmmmm .....

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What would be the process or mechanism of establishing an agency in this situation? Would there be a written fairly standard agreement? Would Brompton's have forms for such things or be involved in the process?

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