Giants, Eli Manning reach settlement in fake memorabilia lawsuit

Ross Houston
May 17, 2018

It's very surprising that Manning and his team have allowed this case to get to trial without reaching a settlement, ESPN business reporter Darren Rovell said via Twitter.

Jonathan Hoff, an attorney for Manning with the firm Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, declined to comment on Brook's statement and would not say whether the parties were discussing a settlement.

Prior to Monday night's settlement, Superior Court Judge Charles E. Powers Jr. said attorneys instead will only begin picking the jury next Monday, in a process that may take several days.

The fraud lawsuit involving Eli Manning and the New York Giants has reportedly reached a settlement on what was supposed to be the first day of the trial, according to Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk. "The compromise agreement, entered into by all parties, should not be viewed as supporting any allegations, claims or defenses".

Three plaintiffs say they bought two of the allegedly fraudulent helmets from Steiner Sports, which has a contract with Manning to provide the game-used equipment. A trial was set to begin next week in New Jersey. Manning and the team had denied the allegations.

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.

The lawsuit, filed in 2014, alleged that Manning delivered to memorabilia company Steiner Sports two autographed helmets with a signed letter asserting they were "game used". The veteran quarterback, a two-time Super Bowl MVP, was accused of directing his team's staffers to create the bogus items because he preferred to hang onto to the authentic mementos of his career. "But the cost of the Giants' cover up was that the grand jury indicted an innocent man: the plaintiff, Eric Inselberg".

The reason? A death in the family of an attorney for Joe Skiba, the Giants equipment manager accused of giving Manning football equipment to be fraudulently sold as "game-used" to collectors. After those emails were made public, Manning angrily denied any wrongdoing, and his attorney said in a court filing this month that his client meant in that exchange to ask Skiba for helmets that would "satisfy the requirement of being game-used".

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