May 23 2024

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Trek Fan Auction Lawsuit Fails

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A Star Trek fan who bought memorabilia he says was proven to be fake does not deserve millions of dollars in damages, according to a ruling from a New York court.

Trek fan Ted Moustakis paid $11,400 at a Christie’s auction for what he believed was a one-of-a-kind uniform worn by Data in Star Trek: The Next Generation.

However, the uniform was only one of several made for the program and not a unique one, as Moustakis said he was led to believe by Christie’s auction house.

In addition to the uniform, Moustakis bought a $6,000 poker visor supposedly worn by Data and a $6,600 table from the set of The Next Generation. But when Moustakis showed the visor to Brent Spiner (Data) at a convention in 2007, he was told that the visor wasn’t genuine. In addition, the table also wasn’t authentic.

Moustakis sued for seven million dollars in damages. The New York Supreme Court’s Appellate Division ruled that the costume had not been represented in the auction catalog as one-of-a-kind and even if the other two items were not genuine, Moustakis wasn’t entitled to “the massive recovery he now demands.”

Christie’s stands behind the authenticity of the auction. “The sale was and remains a fantastic highlight in the memorabilia market,” said Sandra L. Cobden, a lawyer for the famous auction house.

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