Zampolli suit against Massey Knakal dead

By Adam Pincus | September 23, 2010 07:05PM

Clockwise from top left: Paolo Zampolli, 31 Bond Street and Paul Massey

A lawsuit brought by luxury residential and commercial sales broker Paolo Zampolli’s firm seeking more than $200,000 in commissions from investment sales firm Massey Knakal Realty Services and others is dead, court records show.

A judicial hearing officer in New York State Supreme Court, Ira Gammerman, granted Massey Knakal’s motion to dismiss the claims brought by Zampolli’s Paramount Realty Group of America, that he was not paid his share of the commission on the sale of 31 Bond Street, a transcript of a court hearing on Monday shows.

The motion was granted in part because Zampolli was not involved in the negotiation of the sale, and because he was not a broker with Paramount in late 2009 and early 2010 when the sale was being negotiated. Because of that, Paramount could not be a party to the transaction, Gammerman said in the hearing.

“It’s argued by [Massey Knakal and others] that Paramount lacks standing to bring this action because it was not in any way associated with Mr. Zampolli until after the events that I previously discussed occurred… So I’m granting the motion. I’m dismissing all claims of Paramount,” Gammerman said.

Zampolli, co-chairman of Paramount Realty Group of America, filed a suit in March claiming he was cut out of $212,000, or approximately half of a 5 percent commission, on the sale of 31 Bond Street after introducing the buyer of the property, Cristina Calori, to the deal.

A month later, the sale by Heian Bunka Center to Monster Real Estate, owned by Cristina Calori, closed for $8.25 million, city property records show.

In the suit, Zampolli accused Calori, as well as the seller Heian Bunka Center and Massey Knakal, of cutting him out of the commission. Paul Massey, CEO and founding partner of Massey Knakal, declined to comment.

An attorney representing Massey Knakal, Steven Landy, said, “We are pleased with the result. We expected it from the get go.”

Zampolli, in a telephone interview today, rejected the idea that his case was dead. He said parts of the case were thrown out on technical grounds, but that Gammerman gave him until Nov. 3 to refile an amended complaint or file an appeal. He said he would continue fighting for what he said was his share of the commission.

“I am even willing to finance other brokers that might need funding for their legal battles with Massey [Knakal],” he said in an e-mail.