Actor Hagman awarded $11.5M from Citi

By Reuters
Posted Oct. 7, 2010 at 1:34 p.m.

Larry Hagman, the actor who played the villainous J.R. Ewing in 1980s TV show “Dallas,” became a victim of fraud and misconduct at the hands of Citigroup Inc., a FINRA arbitration panel ruled this week.

The total award includes $10 million in punitive damages that Citi must pay to charities selected by Hagman, $1.1 million in compensatory damages and nearly $440,000 in legal fees.

Hagman, who also played astronaut Anthony Nelson in “I Dream of Jeannie” in the 1960’s TV show, had requested $1.35 million in damages.

According to the ruling, Hagman accused Citi in May 2009 of a breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract, fraud by misrepresentation and omission, failure to supervise and violation of federal and state law.

The allegations stemmed from unspecified securities held in Citi accounts, as well as the purchase of a life insurance policy.

Hagman received the unusually large award after the arbitrators found Citigroup Global Markets “engaged in serious conduct,” meeting standards of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority¬† for punitive damages, the ruling said.

“We are disappointed and disagree with the panel’s finding and we are reviewing our options,” said Citigroup spokesman Alex Samuelson.

Industry arbitration panels are not required to explain their rulings.

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