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St. Louis judge fines 4 NFL owners for not turning over financial information

"This behavior cannot go on," Judge Christopher McGraugh told the NFL attorney

ST. LOUIS — The lawsuit between St. Louis and the NFL over the relocation of the Rams is starting to have consequences for some of those involved.

5 On Your Side's Holden Kurwicki was in the courtroom Wednesday for a hearing between lawyers for the NFL and lawyers representing St. Louis about certain owners not turning over financial information as they were ordered to do.

St. Louis lawyers said Patriots owner Robert Kraft, Giants owner John Mara, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and Chiefs owner Clark Hunt have failed to comply with a court order to turn over said documents, and have not paid the ordered fines of $1,000 per day.

NFL attorney Ben Razi argued that the owners didn't want their sensitive financial information floating around "willy nilly".

“They were almost thumbing their noses at his earlier order as if it didn’t mean anything,” said legal expert Daniel Wallach.

Lawyers for St. Louis said that Rams owner Stan Kroenke has complied and provided 23,000 financial documents showing his assets.

Mara failed to provide even basic documentation estimating his net worth.

"This behavior cannot go on," Judge Christopher McGraugh told the NFL attorney.

You can follow Kurwicki's reporting in this full Twitter thread by clicking here.

"NFL Attorney: 'Let’s be practical here.' McGraugh: 'I am being practical here. With all of your good intentions I don’t believe your clients are acting with good intentions,'" Kurwicki tweeted.

As a result of the owners failing to turn over the ordered financial information, Jude McGraugh doled out some fines on Wednesday.

Hunt will be fined $5,000. Mara will be fined $8,000. Jones will be fined $6,000. Kraft will be fined $5,000. McGraugh also ordered $25,000 in legal fees to be reimbursed for the St. Louis legal team.

“His (McGraugh's) orders mean business,” said Wallach. “The National Football League and these four owners didn’t take that order seriously and they should’ve seen this coming. This is no surprise. If anything, they got off a little on the easy side.”

Judge McGraugh went on to set a show cause hearing against the owners for Dec. 3 at 1:30 p.m. and then doled out fines to the owners who have yet to comply.

If requested financial information is not turned over by that Dec. 3 hearing, applicable parties could be held in contempt of court.

“I would suspect between now and December third, if they make good on these document requests, they’ll probably avoid further sanctions,” said Wallach. “If they don’t, December third is going to be a real shock to their system.”

As it stands the civil trial between the City of St. Louis and the NFL/Rams is on track to begin January 10th.

This is a developing story that will be updated.

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