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Lawsuit threat to EBay vision of ecommerce

24 October 2000

SIX claimants have refiled a case against online sales giant EBay that, if successful, could deal a fatal blow to the company’s global status and have huge implications for Internet sales worldwide.

Diana Brooks pleads guilty to collusion in US anti-trust case

09 October 2000

$45m fine for Sotheby’s but five years to pay: Diana ‘Dede’ Brooks, former president and chief executive of Sotheby’s, has pleaded guilty in a Manhattan Federal Court to price-fixing with Christie’s between 1993 and 1999.

Appeal Court sets precedent on auction reserve

09 October 2000

UK: THE Court of Appeal has set a precedent under case law which forces auctioneers to sell to the highest bidder where a reserve has not been set, regardless of how low the winning bid is.

Sotheby’s move to settle class action claims

02 October 2000

Sotheby’s board of directors have approved payment of $256m to clients in the civil lawsuit which claimed collusion with Christie’s in setting charges for buyers in 1992 and sellers in 1995.

Academy ‘will honour auction commitments’

18 September 2000

ACADEMY Auctioneers, London, have vowed to fulfil their commitments to existing clients, despite disputes over the sale of the company.

French delay Yahoo Nazi case

21 August 2000

THE French courts have suspended Yahoo’s appeal against a ban on its Web auctions of Nazi memorabilia while technical experts see if there is a way to prevent French Web-users gaining access to them.

Shindler’s list of fakes leads to jail for established dealer

14 August 2000

UK: CHESTER antiques dealer Alan Shindler has been jailed for six months for handling and selling fake goods. And Trading Standards officers issued an alert to former trade customers in case they were duped.

French courts ban Nazi Web sales

05 June 2000

FRANCE: A Paris court has told one of the world’s leading Websites to prevent French Web-users from gaining access to auctions featuring Nazi memorabilia.

Call to fight Kent Bill

22 November 1999

UK: CAMPAIGNERS want all dealers across the country to act now against the proposed Kent County Council Bill which could tie the trade up in red tape and discourage buyers.

German legal fight over Internet sales

18 October 1999

GERMANY: COMPANIES advertising public auctions or sales on the Internet in Germany are breaking the law and should be stopped, say the German Society of Auctioneers and Fine Arts, Der Bundesverband Deutscher Kunstversteigerer.

Tajan charged over Giacometti bronzes

18 October 1999

FRANCE: AFTER a hearing with the examining magistrate on September 29, leading Paris auctioneer Jacques Tajan has been charged with “suborning a witness and serious breach of trust” over the sale of bronzes by Alberto Giacometti at Drouot in July 1994.

Horse portraits are not fixtures

20 September 1999

UK: A RULING on whether a series of paintings constitute part of the fixtures of a stately home may set a precedent in similar cases where the owner wishes to sell them.

Tiffany expert convicted of trafficking stolen windows

16 August 1999

US: TIFFANY stained glass authority Alistair Duncan was convicted on Thursday by a New York federal jury on all five counts of trafficking in Tiffany windows stolen from cemetaries and mausoleums.

Sotheby’s case retrial

09 August 1999

UK: A MAN charged with stealing part of the treasured collection of a rugby legend from Sotheby’s faces a retrial after the jury failed to reach a verdict.

Chattels rules may backfire

12 July 1999

UK: ALMOST all of the 22,000 heritage chattels exempted from tax since 1976 will not qualify again under the new Government rules when they come up for reassessment, Sotheby’s believe.

Kent dealers plan to block registration bill

12 July 1999

UK: GROWING concern has led to calls for action among dealers in Kent faced with a new law which would make it a criminal offence not to register and keep detailed records when buying and selling secondhand goods in the county.

Chattels and human rights

05 July 1999

UK: THE Government’s policy of forcing the private owners of national treasures to grant more public access to them could soon face a legal challenge.

Fixtures ruling may free tied heirlooms

14 June 1999

UK: A RULING which could lift the ban on the sale of some listed artefacts and set a precedent for other cases is expected from the Department of the Environment within weeks.

French auction reform – the bill is altered

01 June 1999

FRANCE: A NEW date of June 10 has been set for the first parliamentary reading of the long-delayed bill reforming French auction system.

New code for the courtroom

12 April 1999

Law change will reshape civil cases UK: ALL Civil cases heard in English courts will be subject to a new code of conduct from April 26.