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Fraud lawsuit against Giants, Eli Manning will proceed


When the Giants and quarterback Eli Manning found themselves on the wrong side of a lawsuit alleging the distribution of fraudulent memorabilia, the team and the player both expressed a high degree of confidence that they would win. And, similar to the confidence the team has expressed regarding its ability to win in 2014, that prediction has to date fallen flat.

Via the Associated Press, a federal judge in Newark, New Jersey has ruled that the case filed by Eric Inselberg may proceed in state court. The Giants, Manning, and the other defendants tried to shift the litigation to federal court, since in most states federal court provides a forum far more favorable to the interests of those being sued.

Inselberg sued after an FBI sting led to his prosecution on criminal charges. The case against Inselberg has since been dropped, but Inselberg has said in court papers that he wants to make the Giants and Manning accountable for the eventual destruction of his business.

The lawsuit contends that equipment manager Joe Skiba created fake memorabilia at the behest of team management and players, including helmets purportedly worn by Manning in each of his Super Bowl victories.

One of those fake items of memorabilia allegedly has been on display at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, which has issued conflicting statements on whether it’s the helmet Mannning wore in Super Bowl XLII or simply a helmet worn by Manning at some point.