Donny Deutsch stiffed Sotheby’s broker on commission: judge

But MSNBC host denies he went behind Sotheby agent's back to sell Hamptons home
October 30, 2014 09:01AM

MSNBC host and former advertising titan Donny Deutsch allegedly tricked a real estate broker out of a $1.2 million commission by brokering the sale of his Hamptons home himself.

Deutsch’s lawyer allegedly brought in hedge fund manager Howard Marks to look at the Tyson Lane property, thereby going behind Sotheby’s International Realty broker Edward Petrie’s back and causing him to miss out on the 4 percent fee, according to court papers cited by the New York Post. The court is now ordering that Sotheby’s gets the $1.2 million commission after all.

“This court considers that and refusal to acknowledge [Petrie] as the broker to be marks of dishonesty and greed,” the judge wrote in an October 23 decision, according to the newspaper. “Both characteristics are particularly unbecoming when exhibited by those blessed with great wealth.”

Deutsch maintains that he never agreed on a 4 percent commission, according to the newspaper.

“There was no such agreement, neither verbal nor written, and internal Sotheby’s email communications confirm this. Mr. Deutsch will vigorously defend his position in court and is very confident this decision will be reversed on appeal,” a representative for Deutsch told the Post.

In 2012, contractors and architects who helped design his Upper East Side townhouse alleged that Deutsch stiffed them for work on the home[NYP] — Claire Moses