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Freeney sues Bank of America

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Dwight Freeney is suing Bank of America for its alleged role in a fraud scheme that cost the veteran pass rusher $20 million over two years.

In the lawsuit filed in February and announced by Freeney’s attorneys on Tuesday, Freeney claims the bank “aided and abetted” two people who have been convicted of swindling Freeney.

“In 2010, Dwight Freeney authorized Bank of America to manage his assets, including his NFL salary,” Jeffrey B. Isaacs, one of Freeney’s attorneys, said in a statement. “Two years later, Dwight lost more than $20 million because of BofA’s fraud scheme.”

Bank of America has denied any liability.

“Although we sympathize with Mr. Freeney as the victim of a crime, the bank had nothing to do with the criminal scheme,” BOA spokesman Bill Halldin told Perform Media. “The two people responsible for this wrongdoing have already been convicted. The primary wrongdoer never worked for the bank or any of its affiliates, and the other person committed her criminal conduct after she left Merrill Lynch in 2010.”

In 2010, Freeney handed over management of his finances to Merrill Lynch employee Eva Weinberg, who brought in her boyfriend, so-called developer Michael Stern. Over the next year, they filtered $9 million of Freeney’s money into a Bank of America account without Freeney’s knowledge.

Stern and Weinberg were arrested in 2012. Stern pleaded guilty in January 2013 to fraud and was sentenced to five years in prison and ordered to pay $2.6 million to Freeney. Weinberg pleaded guilty as an accessory and was sentenced to six months and ordered to pay Freeney $2.2 million.

Freeney has sued his former attorneys for negligence and is suing a number of Bank of America employees, including former senior vice president Michael Bock, who is Weinberg’s ex-husband.

“This entire scheme could not have succeeded without the substantial involvement and approval of BofA,” Isaacs said. “It was a nightmare scenario: My client went to one of the nation’s biggest banks and asked for its help managing his finances. And what did BofA do? BofA treated Dwight like a mark in a con game.”

Freeney, 35, just finished a two-year deal with the San Diego Chargers that paid him $8.75 million, and he is hoping to play a 14th NFL season.

In 11 years with the Indianapolis Colts and two seasons with the Chargers, he has recorded 111.5 sacks — fifth most among active players and 20th all-time.


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