The parents of a film studio's chief executive are embroiled in a movie of their own making.
Jack and Leslie Kavanaugh, father and mother of Relativity Media's Ryan Kavanaugh, were ordered in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Friday to pay $250,000 in punitive damages over their role in the sale of a fraudulent Picasso drawing, The New York Times' Media Decoder reports.
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One day earlier, a jury awarded approximately $3.2 million in compensatory damages to Victor Sands, a former friend who had sued the couple over the art sale.
The elder Kavanaugh had advised his friend buy the forged artwork, later receiving $800,000 from the gallery owner Tatiana Khan, which Kavanaugh said was a loan, but the jury believed to be fraud.
Khan was sentenced earlier to five years of probation and community service after she acknowledged that she had asked an art restorer to create a copy of Picasso's 1902 "La Femme au Chapeau Bleu" (The Woman in the Blue Hat) and then sold it to Sands for $2 million.
The Kavanaughs face a much more serious consequence for their actions in this process, as their fine is an exorbitant sum that is being disputed by their lawyer, Eric George. They, unlike Khan, have also not admitted any illegal involvement and were a smaller part of the sales process.
The couple testified Friday that they do not have enough money to pay the damages due to no longer having financial support from their famous son, as well as their heavily mortgaged home and legal fees for this case.
"Last year has been tough, especially since last August," Kavanaugh said, when asked how he gets by. "I'm trying to sell anything I can."