We are always looking for new challenges. We are constantly evaluating opportunities to represent clients in unique, interesting and challenging circumstances. Our attorneys have handled a variety of such cases over the years, some of which are noted below. If you think you have such a case, let us know.
Alsdorf v. Bennigson, Case No. 04 C 5953 (Picasso painting stolen by Nazis)Andrew M. Hale was retained as local counsel on behalf of the defendant Thomas Bennigson, a California resident who claimed that he was the rightful owner of Picasso’s painting “Femme en blanc” (“Woman in White”). Chicago resident Marilyn Alsdorf purchased the painting from a New York gallery in 1975 for $357,000. Bennigson claimed the Nazis stole the painting from his grandmother during World War II. Bennigson’s grandmother, Carlotta Landsberg, bought the painting in Berlin in the mid-1920’s. When Landsberg fled to the United States, she entrusted the painting to collector Justin K. Thannhauser, who himself soon had to flee. The painting was subsequently looted from Thannhauser’s warehouse. Bennigson filed suit in California seeking recovery of the painting. Alsdorf filed her own suit in Chicago, claiming she was the rightful owner of the painting. In 2005, Alsdorf agreed to pay Bennigson $6.5 million to Bennigson to settle the parties’ litigation. Bennigson’s California counsel was E. Randol Schoenberg. Read Full Article…
Maureen Baker, et al. v. Jewel Food Stores and Dominick’s Finer Foods (Class Action Alleging Price Fixing Over Milk Prices In Chicago)Andrew M. Hale represented the plaintiffs in this consumer class action lawsuit brought against Chicago’s two largest grocery stores, Dominick’s and Jewel, alleging they were conspiring to fix and inflate the retail prices of milk being sold in the Chicagoland area. Rock Fusco atttorneys were successful in certifying a class of consumers from the counties of Cook, Dekalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will who purchased milk at Jewel or Dominick’s between August 1996 and August 2000. The case proceeded to a bench trial before the Honorable John E. Morrissey in the Circuit Court of Cook County. Judge Morrissey held that the plaintiffs had to prove their case under the Illinois Antitrust Act not by the typical civil burden of a preponderance of the evidence but by the more stringent clear and convincing evidence standard. Unfortunately, at trial, Judge Morrissey ruled in favor of the defendant grocery stores. On January 12, 2005, the Illinois Appellate Court affirmed the trial court’s ruling.