Money & The Law - LawCall

When Rocco Marini and his wife Josephine took money from their children’s trust funds to invest in a business venture, they never dreamed where they would end up: suing another man’s children for their college tuitions.

The Marinis invested nearly $17-million with a friend’s coin business. For the money, they received what they thought were 86 very valuable coins. One of the coins was a 1988 Morgan Silver Dollar that they bought from their buddy, Harold Adamo, Jr. for $100,000. The coin turned out to be worth only $200.

This was just one of many fraudulent coins Adamo sold to the Marinis. The New York couple took him to court to try and recover some of the millions they lost by investing with him. Eventually, they won a judgement of $20-million, this included the more than $11-million the couple had lost over the coins. They had purchased coins from Adamo for more than a decade.

So far, the Marinis have had no luck in collecting any of the settlement. So, they have taken what you may consider a drastic step to try and recover some of their own children’s trust fund money. The Marinis are suing Hofstra University, Fairfield University and Brooklyn Law School to try and claw back some of their money. Adamo’s own children attended, or have attended one of the three schools. The Marinis claim that tuition to those schools was paid with “ill-gotten gains”.

However, a Brooklyn judge disagrees with the Marinis, and has ruled that Adamo’s children “have no legal obligation to return the money to their father or to the Martinis.”

Ironically, Adamo is a former neighbor to the Marinis and The Godfather to their children. Do you think the judge made the right ruling?

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