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ABC Special Report
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People Magazine - $7 Mil Victory
Thursday, 14 October 2004
Sandra Bullock Scores $7 Mil Legal Victory
A jury has awarded actress Sandra Bullock nearly $7 million in a long-awaited verdict pitting Bullock against the former architect and builder of her lakefront Austin home... The architect, M.B. "Benny" Daneshjou, 52, sued Bullock, 40, in June 2001, claiming that Bullock owed money to his company for designing and building her home. Bullock countersued, claiming Daneshjou's construction work was defective and that he had committed fraud through underhanded billing practices... "I felt firmly committed to see this process through to a just conclusion, especially for all those home owners who could never afford to come this far," Bullock said. "I am in awe of the great service and enormous sacrifice the members of the jury have made over these last eight weeks."

People Magazine
Sandra Bullock Scores $7 Mil Legal Victory

Thursday Oct 14, 2004 4:00pm EST
By Alicia Dennis

CREDIT: AP PHOTO / AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN, JAY JANNER

A jury has awarded actress Sandra Bullock nearly $7 million in a long-awaited verdict pitting Bullock against the former architect and builder of her lakefront Austin home.

Judge Paul Davis announced the verdict on Thursday after four days of intense deliberations.

The architect, M.B. "Benny" Daneshjou, 52, sued Bullock, 40, in June 2001, claiming that Bullock owed money to his company for designing and building her home. Bullock countersued, claiming Daneshjou's construction work was defective and that he had committed fraud through underhanded billing practices.

In its verdict, the only charge the jury disagreed with was racketeering.

"I am very pleased with the outcome of the trial, but disappointed I could not be here today for the verdict," Bullock said in a statement read by John Chamblee, one of her attorneys. Bullock stayed in Austin awaiting the verdict until late Wednesday afternoon, but then had to leave for work.

"I felt firmly committed to see this process through to a just conclusion, especially for all those home owners who could never afford to come this far," Bullock said. "I am in awe of the great service and enormous sacrifice the members of the jury have made over these last eight weeks."

Chamblee said the case was never about money to Bullock. "It is important for homeowners to reach a point to get to a just result," he told reporters. "It was about doing the right thing."

John Bullock, Sandra's father, said he does not know what will happen to his daughter's home now. "She loves the land, and it is a beautiful lot. Now that this is over, we can move forward on a decision."

Daneshjou, for his part, said he was not surprised by the verdict. "When they brought in two other disgruntled customers, it tainted the jury's minds about this case," Daneshjou said. "If that had been properly dealt with, we'd have a different verdict. This has killed my business."

Daneshjou also sued David Shrum, his former construction manager on Bullock's house, claiming that Shrum was responsible for anything wrong with the home. The jury disagreed. It stated in its verdict that Shrum was not responsible for the home's defects and awarded him over $100,000 in attorneys' fees and money for any subsequent appeals of the case.

Daneshjou and his personal attorney, Wade Jefferies, said he plans to appeal the case.
http://people.aol.com/people/articles/0,19736,724150,00.html

 
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