Family believe brain damage has caused New York millionaire to give away his fortune
Huge sums paid to pair who relatives say took advantage of him
Jeffrey Horan, the millionaire financier who was critically injured in a 2001 helicopter accident, was not protected by his financial adviser, a new lawsuit alleges. Bank of America officials did not intervene while Horan gave away expensive gifts to almost-strangers as he slowly lost his sanity the new suit contends.
According to Gothamist, the lawsuit, filed by Jeffrey's brother Lawrence, outlines contractor Alex Gershkovich and a Queens woman named Elizabeth Orti took advantage of Horan's deteriorating mental state.
Horan reportedly bought Gershkovich a $260,000 Lamborghini while also paying him $600,000 to work on his Upper East Side apartment. He gave a $72,000 Mercedes-Benz to Orti and transferred $300,000 to her account.
Horan was reportedly handicapped for life on his way back to Manhattan from a Philadelphia 76ers game in 2001 when his helicopter crashed in heavy fog. Although all of the passengers survived Horan was mentally scarred, later spending time in the psychiatric ward of Bellevue Hospital.
But Bank of America financial advisers claim they didn't noticeanything out of the ordinary in the way Horan was conducting his business in 2010 when he began giving away eye-popping amounts of his own money.
The new lawsuit alleges that it was Horan's deteriorating mental state that led him to act in such a generous way, handing out blank checks to near total strangers.
'This is a very unfortunate situation where a guy with a severe mental disorder was taken advantage of by a great many people,' Kieran Conlon the attorney for Lawrence Horan told the Daily News.
Ortiz and Gershkovich misled Horan, the lawsuit claims, 'in order to take advantage of his mania and psychotic delusions.' The suit is demanding the return of all of Horan's gifts.
'When your helicopter crashes doing 165 miles an hour into trees, it tends to change people’s lives,' Horan’s former business partner Drew Doscher told the press. 'I lost a good friend and a great business partner.'
The lawsuit says Horan was a danger to himself with respect to his financial affairs and had been hospitalised twice for mental health issues. He was committed against his will in both cases.
Horan’s financial adviser at Bank of America knew her client was mentally unstable but she failed to raise the alarm 'ignoring suspicious and inexplicable activity,' the suit claims.
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