Larry Hagman, the actor who played the role of J.R. Ewing in the 1980s TV show Dallas, has won his case against Citigroup Inc. The bank was ordered to pay over $11 million in damages. The total award includes $10 million in punitive damages that Citi must pay to charities selected by Hagman, $1.1 million in compensatory damages and nearly $440,000 in legal fees.
Hagman, who also played astronaut Anthony Nelson in I Dream of Jeannie in the 1960s TV show, accused Citi in May 2009 of a breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract, fraud by misrepresentation and omission, failure to supervise and violation of federal and state law. The ruling was by an arbitration panel of FINRA, a self-regulatory body of the U.S. financial industry. The allegations stemmed from unspecified securities held in Citi accounts, as well as the purchase of a life insurance policy. The arbitrators found Citigroup Global Markets “engaged in serious misconduct,” meeting FINRA’s standards for punitive damages.
Hagman, who turned 79 last month, continues to appear on TV and in movies, including the 1998 political spoof Primary Colors. More recently he has played off his role as a Texas oilman to become a spokesman for a solar energy company. According to Solar World, Hagman’s California home was the largest residential producer of solar power in the United States. Since industry arbitration panels are not required to explain their rulings, we have to assume the arbitrators found Citigroup guilty of some pretty bad conduct and that their award was legally sound.
Source: Insurance Journal
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