An American federal judge has ordered former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani to pay a judgment of nearly $148 million “immediately.” The ruling was made Wednesday, after a lawsuit alleging Giuliani had wrongfully predated the city’s bond offerings was brought forth by a New Jersey bondholder.
The bondholder, Kings County waved originally filed a lawsuit against the Giuliani administration in 1996, claiming that it had wrongfully manipulated the timing of the city’s bond offerings. The wrongful activities allegedly allowed the city to mislead investors into thinking the city was in a better financial state.
When the lawsuit was brought forth, Giuliani’s actions were determined to violate the Securities Acts of 1933 and 1934. These violations resulted in Judge Johnson issuing the hefty judgement in favor of the bondholders.
This lawsuit was originally dismissed in 1996, as it had been filed in an untimely manner. Judge Johnson, however reevaluated the lawsuit late last year, and determined the bondholder’s claims were factual and well-founded. Since the judgement was reevaluated, Giuliani’s lawyer argued that the lawsuit was too old to award damages. Judge Johnson, however, denied this argument because she felt rudy Giuliani still can financially benefit from this matter.
In her ruling, Judge Johnson said it would be unjust to Giuliani to allow the lawsuit to go without awarding damages of some kind. She said “Although the Securities Acts only allow for damages to be awarded in two-year increments, this court feels that it would be unjust in this situation not to award any damages to the bondholders.”
With this decision, it is likely Giuliani will have to pay the $148 million judgment as soon as possible. If he fails to do so, the bondholders will likely seek a court-ordered enforcement of the judgment. This could result in assets being seized, or the court forcing Giuliani to pay out the significant monetary amount awarded to the bondholders.
As such, this ruling serves as an important reminder to both bondholders and those who administer bond offers: always be honest with investors, as the consequences for wrongdoing can be dire.
Overall, this matter serves as a reminder that businesses, organizations, and administrations should always adhere to the truth when issuing securities. Honesty is always the best policy in these situations, as being caught in a fraud can not only lead to monetary damages but can result in a severe loss of trust.