The Giants announced Monday that they and quarterback Eli Manning had reached a confidential settlement with three men who were suing them over claims of memorabilia fraud.
A settlement has been reached in a lawsuit that claimed New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning provided bogus "game-worn" equipment that was sold to unsuspecting collectors. "All parties are grateful to have the matter, which began in 2014, concluded and are now focused on football, the fans and the future", the statement read.
Filed four years ago by Eric Inselberg after an Federal Bureau of Investigation raid ruined his memorabilia business, the suit alleging that the Giants passed off phony helmets, including two Manning had supposedly worn in separate Super Bowl wins, had been slowly gaining steam.
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Manning's attorneys claimed the emails had been marked confidential and should never have been released, and that Manning was merely honoring a contract with Steiner Sports to provide two each of game-used helmets and jerseys.
Jury selection originally was scheduled for May 14, but the date was moved Monday to May 21 to accommodate a funeral one of the attorneys wanted to attend.
In court filings, Manning and the team have denied the allegations and have characterized the lead plaintiff as a scam artist who has sold bogus memorabilia himself over the years.
"I'm not sure yet whether I'm going to call him in our case", Brook said.
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His attorneys described the lawsuit as "inflammatory and baseless", while also claiming that the Inselberg's attorneys had used underhanded tactics to create negative press for Manning, according to ABC.com via the Associated Press' David Porter.
The Giants and Manning contend photomatching is unreliable because it does not take into account that helmets are routinely reconditioned during or after a season, the evidence of which might be found on the inside of the helmet and not the outside.
At the center of the dispute were messages from Manning to a team equipment manager asking for helmets "that can pass as game used".
The email does not refer to the two helmets at issue in the lawsuit, but Inselberg alleged it indicated a pattern of fraud.
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In addition to Mara and Manning, former Giants player Michael Strahan also gave a deposition to attorneys but has not been listed as a potential witness for either the plaintiffs or the defense, he said.
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