The high-profile litigation between Las Vegas Sands and a businessman who says he was cheated out of his reward for helping to secure a casino license in Macau ended in the plaintiff’s favor on May 14. After two days of deliberation, the jury awarded the plaintiff $70 million. Meanwhile, Sands may seek a third trial in the case after alleging that at least one of the jurors was unfairly prejudiced against Sands’ CEO Sheldon Adelson.
We have been following this case closely on this Las Vegas business dispute blog, with our most recent post coming on May 10. To recap, the plaintiff says that he and Sands reached an agreement to pay him a fee plus two percent of the profits of a future Sands casino in Macau if he helped the company secure a casino license.
The plaintiff says his work with the Chinese government led to the license, but Sands says he exagerrated the terms of the contract and failed to perform his duities. Sands eventually opened four resort-casinos in Macau.
The dispute led to a lawsuit in 2004 that was decided in the plaintiff’s favor, but the the Nevada Supreme Court later set aside that verdict over some improperly admited evidence. The plaintiff refiled the litigation, claiming he was owed up to $328 million. He was awarded less than that but still will receive $70 million if the verdict holds up.
Immediately after the jury announced the verdict, attorneys for Sands asked the judge to order a retrial. They said that one juror admitted being biased against Sands and Adelson. Though the judge declined the motion, Sands might decide to pursue the issue on appeal.
Source: Las Vegas Sun, “Jury sides with businessman in Las Vegas Sands lawsuit,” Hannah Dreier, May 14, 2013