Judge Judy is reportedly being sued
over fine china she allegedly bought at a fraction of their value from one of her producers who was involved in a divorce.
The lawsuit states producer Randy Douthit sold Judge Judith Sheindlin china after his split from wife Patric Jones. The Christofle tableware was worth upward of $500,000, but Judge Judy bought it for $50,000.
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The lawsuit, filed Tuesday at Los Angeles County Superior Court, claims Judge Judy and Douthit fraudulently schemed to prevent Jones from obtaining the dishes in the divorce and that Douthit sold the dishes without Jones' consent.
However, according to divorce documents obtained by TMZ, the items in question were purchased in 2003 for approximately $100,000. The divorce judge valued the items in 2012 at $125,000 and plans to order Douthit to pay Jones half — $62,500, in which case, Judge Judy wouldn't owe Jones a cent.
California is a community property state, so sale of community property assets during a divorce is only legal if both spouses consent. The divorce documents, however, contend the dishes were already accounted for during the split.
Jones' lawyer Perry Wander said that Jones demanded she return the china before filing the suit.
"My client made a written demand to [Judge Judy] return the tableware, and she basically told her to go pound sand," Wander said.
Additionally, Jones claims Douthit agreed to reduce his profit participation in the Judge Judy show
so he wouldn't have to fork over as much money in the divorce settlement.
Jones is seeking the dishes, which she says are worth $514,421.14, or their value. She is also vying for punitive damages.
Judge Judy, one of the highest-paid daytime talk show hosts
whose successful show premiered in 1996, told TMZ no such lawsuit exists to her knowledge. She also called Jones "lacking integrity" and "untruthful."
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"I have not seen any complaint by the former Mrs. Douthit, however, I don't owe this lady a cent,” she said. “And if this 50-year-old woman would spend her time more productively at trying to find a job, instead of abusing the judicial system with frivolous lawsuits, we would all be a lot better off."
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