Billionaire bond investor Bill Gross will have to be on his best behavior to avoid jail time for harassing his neighbor.
Gross and his wife, Amy Schwartz Gross, were in court last week for violating a previous court order to stop blaring music to annoy his neighbor, Mark Towfiq.
Orange County Superior Court Judge Kimberly Knill held the Grosses in contempt of court on Friday for violating that order, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Knill sentenced them to jail for five days, but immediately suspended the sentence, saying the couple could perform community service in lieu of two days of jail time and could avoid the other three days if they abide by a restraining order for a year.
The order bars them from playing music outdoors at any time. Knill also fined the twosome $1,000 each.
Knill in December issued a three-year restraining order against the Grosses, essentially ordering them to stay away from Towfiq and refrain from playing music too loudly in their back yard.
Towfiq claimed the Grosses violated that order in July by playing music. Video submitted by Towfiq showed the Grosses refusing requests from police to turn down the music.
“What the court viewed on the videos is nothing short of unadorned contempt,” Knill said.
Patty Glaser, the Grosses’ trial attorney, plans to appeal.
The Gross-Towfiq dispute dates back to the spring of 2020, when Towfiq complained to Gross about a net the billionaire had erected to protect a delicate glass sculpture he had installed in his yard.
Gross refused to take down the net and Towfiq eventually complained to the city, which issued Gross a violation for failing to get a permit for the netting.
Towfiq alleged that the next week, Gross started to play music loudly at all hours, including the “Gilligan’s Island” theme song over and over.
[LAT] — Dennis Lynch