A Manhattan judge has found an MSNBC personality and former CNBC television host guilty of scamming a Sotheby’s broker out of his million-dollar commission. The judge called the scam “dishonest” and “greedy.”
Multi-millionaire Donny Deutsch was found guilty by a Manhattan court judge of scamming a real estate broker out of his $1.2 million commission over the sale of Deutsch’s $30 million Hamptons home. Sotheby’s International Realty broker Edward Petrie said he had a potential buyer, investor Howard Marks, for Deutsch’s East Hampton home in 2010. But Deutsch knew Marks and double-crossed him by going behind Petrie’s back and brokering the sale privately to avoid paying the commission fee.
“This court considers that and refusal to acknowledge [Petrie] as the broker to be marks of dishonesty and greed,” Justice Charles Ramos said in his decision. Ramos awarded Petrie’s employer, Sotheby’s, $1.2 million, reported the New York Post.
“Both characteristics are particularly unbecoming when exhibited by those blessed with great wealth,” the judge added.
Deutsche hosted ‘The Big Idea With Donny Deutsch’ on CNBC, and regularly appears on MSNBC’s morning talk show ‘Morning Joe.’