HomeNewsGordon Ramsay Wins $4.5 Million in Damages, Judge Rules Rowen Seibel was...

Gordon Ramsay Wins $4.5 Million in Damages, Judge Rules Rowen Seibel was “Wilful in Misconduct”

“Boiling Point” star Gordon Ramsay has finally won $4.5 million in damages in a 2014 lawsuit filed by his former business partner Rowen Seibel regarding “The Fat Cow” restaurant. The New York Superior Court judge found that Seibel was “not a credible witness” and produced “fabricated evidence” before the court. Read on to know more.

Incompetent to Manage…

British chef who rose to fame with the television miniseries “Boiling Point” in 1999 was sued in 2014 by his ex-business partner Rowen Seibel. After years of legal battle, the New York Superior Court granted relief to the 55-year-old chef.

Judge Melissa Crane warded judgment in favor of Ramsay and his company GR US and ordered that Seibel pay $1.6 million as well as 50 to 70 percent of Ramsay’s attorneys’ fees, which were $5 million. The total payout comes to approximately $4.5 million.

The New York Superior Court ruled out that Rowen Seibel has produced “fabricated evidence” against Gordan and was “not a credible witness”. A spokesperson for Ramsay confirmed that  “The judge believed Seibel was not credible, that it appeared he fabricated evidence, that he received ‘kickbacks’ and siphoned money and was ‘incompetent in managing the restaurant.”

The judge ruled that Seibel and his colleague, Craig Green, clearly plotted to take over Gordon Ramsay Holdings via a deal with Wexford Capital, which reflected poorly on his credibility.

The spokesperson added, Mr Ramsay was earnest in his efforts to sever all business dealings as these problems with Seibel were discovered, and we’re pleased but in no way surprised by the ruling.”

A friend of Ramsay told in an interview, “It’s been an emotional and stressful eight years, but Gordon feels vindicated by the judge’s decision and can finally put this all behind him.”  FYI, Seibel was sentenced to a month behind bars in 2016 for lying to the IRS about more than $1 million he stashed in Switzerland as a part of a tax evasion scheme.

What was the Lawsuit about?

The “Gordon Ramsay Restaurants” owner and Rowen Seibel opened The Fat Cow restaurant in The Grove, a swanky outdoor shopping mall in LA in 2012. However, when it shuttered in 2014, Seibel sued Ramsay for $10.7 million.

The suit claimed that Ramsay had “deliberately mishandled a trademark problem” for the eatery — and then “formed a new company with new partners and then secretly negotiated a deal with his Los Angeles landlord” to create a new restaurant in The Fat Cow’s space.

Ramsay filed a counterclaim against Seibel citing his “fraudulent scheme to freeload upon the renown and acumen of celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay.” He also referred to Seibel as “inept”, “self-dealing”, and “incompetent and dishonest”.

It was alleged in the counterclaim that Seibel “begged to be included” in the business but “proved egregiously inept in its management.” Justice is finally served. The court ruled that Seibel took kickbacks from suppliers to The Fat Cow.

Seibel also withdrew money from the restaurant’s capital account at the time when the business was failing and Ramsay was putting his funds in to keep it afloat. The ruling read: “Bottom line, though the record reflects that Seibel engaged in wilful misconduct, where the Ramsay side was merely negligent at worst.”

Interestingly, the judge found some criticism of Ramsay but ruled that in closing The Fat Cow, he mitigated the damages from a class action from employers.  If you don’t know this, Ramsay also faced a suit in 2013 by former employees who claimed that they were overworked and underpaid.

Ramsay was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth II in the 2006 New Year Honours list for services to the hospitality industry. He is all set to come up with a new show, “Next Level Chef,” on FOX in 2023. What do you think about this judgment?

Mallika
I am Mallika Singh, a lawyer and writer by profession. Writing gives me a sense of freedom and independence. I am a keen observer and an ardent reader. When not at work, you can find me at the stable. Horse riding is another passion that keeps me going.
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