Jonathan Nelson, the lawyer for Mr. Deak and his wife, Moshira Solimon, said that his clients first began to suspect in 2010 that fraud had taken place, and that they had “gathered the information in bits and pieces” by April 2011. The couple are asking for $5 million in punitive damages.
“They are just incredibly disappointed and shocked,” Mr. Nelson said.
In a statement, Mr. Abdul Rauf and his wife, Daisy Khan, an officer at the two organizations, said that they “emphatically deny the allegations contained in that lawsuit.”
“The lawsuit is meritless and it will be vigorously defended in the New York court,” the statement said.
The couple noted that the Cordoba Initiative is already suing Mr. Deak and Ms. Solimon for $1.5 million in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, accusing them of fraud and breach of trust. That lawsuit accuses them of knowingly inflating the value of a condominium in Washington that they sold to the Cordoba Initiative in 2010, and then failing to transfer the title.
I’d guess that Imam Rauf has seen The Producers, and he remembers this line:
“under the right circumstances, a producer could make more money with a flop than he could with a hit.”
If, of course, he doesn’t go to prison…