CONCORD — A federal jury has ordered a mother and son to pay a noted art dealer and commodities trader $465,000 in damages for selling 16 works it determined were forgeries.
After a three-day trial in U.S. District Court, Lorettann and Nikolas Gascard were found guilty of fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud when they sold paintings the pair insisted were from modern artist Leon Golub, who died in 2004.
Andrew Hall, a one-time trader in oil and commodities, sued the mother and son in this case that shows even a top collector can be duped.
“The jury has returned with a verdict for Andy Hall in the full amount we sought,” Hall’s lawyer, Ted Poretz of New York’s Zukerman Gore Braneis & Crossman, said in a statement. “We’re delighted.”
The ruling also compels the Gascards to pay court costs and legal fees that Hall incurred in the case.
Lorettann Gascard, 69, was a one-time director of the Franklin Pierce University art gallery and had a long friendship with Golub, whom she said gave her some of his works.
During the trial, Gascard's lawyer, William Pribis, said the mother and son still believe the works are not forgeries.
Pribis did not respond to a request for comment on the decision.
The case was heard before U.S. District Court Judge Steven J. McAuliffe in Concord. A jury of two men and five women heard the evidence and issued the verdict Thursday.