Verbruggen continues legal case against Kimmage

Irish journalist welcomes latest development in Defence Fund case

Paul Kimmage has welcomed the latest development in the case surrounding the missing money from the Defence Fund set up in his name but has confirmed to Cyclingnews that former UCI President Hein Verbruggen is still pursuing him through the Swiss courts.

The Kimmage Defence Fund was created in 2012 by Lesli Cohen, who together with Aaron Brown and's Andy Shen, clubbed together to support Kimmage after Verbruggen, Pat McQuaid and the UCI started legal proceedings against him with a defamation case.

Nearly $100,000 was raised from within the cycling community, with Kimmage able to use an initial 21,000 CHF in his fight.

The case was temporarily shelved in 2012, and McQuaid and the UCI later ended their participation. Verbruggen has since pressed ahead with the case, leaving Kimmage with little option but to defend himself, although he must do so without the help of the remaining defence fund.

“I got papers from Verbruggen’s lawyers two weeks ago and we filed more papers a few days ago so it’s still going on. McQuaid and the UCI pulled out but Verbruggen is going ahead and the judge in Switzerland will decide on the case. I don’t get how it all works over there so I’m leaving it all in the hands of my lawyer out there,” Kimmage told Cyclingnews.

“It’s going somewhere though. I’m really tired of Hein Verbruggen fucking up my life and he will be held accountable for that.”

While Verbruggen pursues Kimmage in Switzerland, the status over the missing funds has also moved on with reports that Aaron Brown has been found liable by the Massachusetts Superior Court. According to Bill Hue, one of the initial donors and who raised the case, the actual sum owed by Brown has yet to be determined. However he told Cyclingtips: “What they said is that he has the money, he wrongfully took the money, and he is responsible for taking the money. We have been granted that judgement. Now it is just a matter of figuring out how much money he took and how much the costs are and attorneys’ fees and all that stuff.”

Speaking to Cyclingnews, Kimmage welcomed the verdict in relation to Brown’s status and the missing funds, however he holds out little hope of the money ever being recovered.

“This is a judgement, that in my view will ultimately come to nothing. I don’t think that anyone believes that this guy is going to show up and hold himself accountable for his actions. I don’t expect that the people who gave the money in good faith will ever see their cash again. That’s the disappointment,” Kimmage said.

“I would hope that the noose is tightening around Mr Brown but I’m a pessimist by nature. I have to take my hat off to Bill and Lesli for pursuing it but that’s just how I feel about it.”

The case against Verbruggen rumbles on and Kimmage is unware of his current legal bills, nor how much will be needed until a final court resolution is reached.

“The killer for me is that it’s still not over. I’m still in court and I’m still dealing with lawyers and Verbruggen. I still have costs coming down the road and I don’t know how I’m going to pay them. That’s the annoyance because all the means I had at my disposal to defend myself, I don’t have that now.”


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