The NFL keeps taking L’s in St. Louis.
On Wednesday, Judge Christopher McGraugh issued $24,000 in fines and imposed $25,000 in legal fees over the failure of multiple owners to fully disclose financial information, as previously ordered.
“It does seem to me that your clients . . . are dragging their feet on this,” Judge McGraugh said, via the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “It seems like we’re in a three-card monte game.”
The judge fined Chiefs owner Clark Hunt $5,000, New York Giants co-owner John Mara $8,000, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones $6,000, and Patriots owner Robert Kraft $5,000 for not making complete disclosures in compliance with the court order. Judge McGraugh ruled in July that sufficient evidence existed as to those persons and Rams owner Stan Kroenke to support an award of punitive damages. That makes their financial situation relevant, and their financial information subject to disclosure.
Kroenke fully complied with the order.
As to the others, that’s not the end of it. On December 3, the lawyers for those four owners will return to court with an opportunity to “show cause” as to why they should not be held in contempt of court for failing to comply with the order to release the information.
The plaintiffs had tried for more than that. They wanted an order striking the pleadings and entering judgment against those owners, with the trial then focusing only on damages. The judge did not go that far, obviously.
Maybe, at some point, he will.
“This behavior just cannot go on,” Judge McGraugh said.
If it does, stronger sanctions could be coming.