Now, this is a tale: Pimco co-founder allegedly blasted “Gilligan’s Island” theme to irritate neighbor
Billionaire Bill Gross accused of playing song on repeat outside his Laguna Beach home
In 2018, the billionaire and his ex-wife spent about $150 million in separate — seemingly competing — transactions on four Laguna Beach homes in the span of about a month.
That hedge funder, Pimco co-founder Bill Gross, appears to have found another nemesis in his Orange County community, this one his neighbor. A dispute between the two in the exclusive community got so out of hand that Gross is accused of blaring the theme song to “Gilligan’s Island” on repeat, according to the Los Angeles Times.
He is due back in Orange County Superior Court later this month, for allegedly violating a court order to stop harassing the neighbor, Mark Towfiq, according to the report. Gross, a former star bond investor who retired in 2019, spent a combined $68 million on his two Laguna Beach homes.
The disagreement with Towfiq dates to April 2020. As the coronavirus was taking hold, the two men were arguing over a 12-foot-high net that Gross had put up to protect his backyard glass sculpture, designed by artist Dale Chihuly.
Towfiq asked Gross to remove the net and eventually complained to the city. Laguna Beach issued Gross a violation because he erected the sculpture and netting without permits, according to the report.
Towfiq claims that the next weekend, Gross began playing music loudly at all hours, including the “Gilligan’s Island” theme — “The Ballad of Gilligan’s Isle” — over and over.
They ended up in court, which revealed evidence that Gross told Towfiq he would stop playing the music in exchange for dropping the complaint. Gross’ lawyers claim the couple played music at “a quiet level” on “small personal speakers,” according to the report.
Gross and his current wife, Amy Schwartz, have both accused Towfiq of “peeping” and of having a “perverse obsession” with them.
The judge ruled that Gross’ actions amounted to harassment and ordered him to stop playing music outdoors when he or his wife were not there, and to keep at least five yards away from the Towfiqs.
His neighbor claims that Gross and Schwartz violated that order earlier this month, and also erected umbrellas on his property.
In February, Los Angeles landlord Jerico Development apologized for blasting the theme song to “Barney & Friends” in an endless loop across a secluded stretch of San Pedro, aimed directly at an encampment of homeless people.
[LAT] — Dennis Lynch