It was reported on Monday that a lawsuit had been filed in Dallas County against Dallas Cowboys’ receiver Dez Bryant, claiming that Bryant owed $240,000 to a New York jeweler for “eight to ten” pieces bought between January and May of 2010; now, a second suit has been reported, making Bryant’s total alleged debt more than a half a million dollars.
The second reported suit (but actually the first suit), was filed in 2010 in Tarrant County, and claims that Bryant owes $293,000 for jewelry and $12,350 for tickets to various sporting events bought last year. The Dallas County suit was filed on behalf of A+A Diamonds in New York, which does business under the name Rafaello & Co.
“My client’s counsel in New York has been trying for at least six months to get him to pay,” said Mike Bowers, an attorney with the firm of Bell, Nannally & Martin, who is representing Rafaello & Co., per the Dallas Morning News. “We still would obviously like to have a satisfactory resolution to this outside of a trial.”
Of the $267,000 owed for the eight to ten pieces, Bower said that Bryant has only paid around $21,000.
“I think our lawsuit puts it in crystal-clear context,” Bowers said. “My client would like to get paid.”
The Bryant camp has remained mum on the issue thus far. The Morning News was unable to reach Bryant for comment on Monday. His adviser and friend David Wells referred reporters to his attorney, Senator Royce West (D-Dallas), who did not return messages left at his offices in Dallas and Austin.
UPDATE: Senator Royce West, the attorney representing Bryant in the two aforementioned lawsuits told NBCDFW on Tuesday that, had Bryant not been involved in the incident at NorthPark Center mall last week, the suits being brought against Bryant would never have come to light--further, he said, the offduty officer who approached Bryant at the mall last week "had no right" to do so.
"As a result of this incident, now the issue of having a couple of lawsuits filed against Dez has been blown all out of proportion," he said. "The lawsuits will be resolved in the matter that other lawsuits against celebrities are resolved."
West said that discussing the details of the lawsuits would be inappropriate.
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