Time will tell whether Lance Thomas's 2009 jewelry purchase results in any repercussions for Duke. Credit: CHUCK LIDDYemail@example.com
Lance Thomas’s $97,800 jewelry purchase in 2009, now the subject of a lawsuit, came while the Duke team had dispersed for its holiday break.
After the Blue Devils’ Dec. 19 victory over Gonzaga in Madison Square Garden, the team had a few days off before the Dec. 29 game in Durham against Long Beach State. Thomas purchased five pieces of diamond jewelry with a $30,000 down payment at Rafaello & Company, a Manhattan jeweler, on Dec. 21, according to an Associated Press report. Thomas lived just outside the city in Scotch Plains, N.J.
Now, Rafaello & Co. is suing Thomas for the remaining $67,800, which he had agreed to pay within 15 days of his purchase. The lawsuit was filed in Texas’s Travis County in January and had not previously been publically disclosed.
Mike Bowers, the Dallas-based attorney for Rafaello & Co., said his client waited more than two years to file the suit because the jeweler had been trying to collect its money.
“There were efforts taken by my client to secure payment,” Bowers said. “Obviously the lawsuit was an option that unfortunately came to pass when arrangements could not be made to secure payment.”