Vintage comics dealer and auction house Metropolis Collectibles of New York has launched a lawsuit against comics grading and slabbing company, CBCS, as well as Beckett Collectibles, Inc, CBCS Operations of North Carolina, and Michael Bornstein and Steven Borock.
The suit claims damages in excess of $15,000, and alleges the following sequence of events, in part:
On or about July 19, 2014, Metropolis and CBCS executed a Preferred Vendor Agreement (the “Agreement”).
CBCS breached the Agreement by failing to perform various obligations under the Agreement and by wrongfully terminating the Agreement.
CBCS’s breaches of the Agreement are the subject matter of a currently pending American Arbitration Association proceeding styled Metropolis Collectibles, Inc. v. Comic Book Certification Service, Inc. AAA Case No. 01-17-0000-7091 (the “Arbitration Proceeding”).
During the pendency of the Arbitration Proceeding, CBCS sold its assets, including its comic book grading and certification business, to Beckett and/or CBCS Ops (the “Asset Sale”).
Upon information and belief, the Asset Sale has rendered CBCS insolvent.
Upon information and belief, Defendants, including Borock and Bornstein, knowingly and intentionally conspired and structured the Asset Sale to hinder, delay or defraud Metropolis.
The case refers to an undefined Agreement between Metropolis and CBCS that they allege CBCS broke. And during arbitration, sold all their assets including its comic book grading and certification business to Beckett Collectibles.
Metropolis maintains that they qualify as a creditor of CBCS’s under Florida state law, and that therefore:
The Asset Sale between CBCS, Beckett and/or CBCS Ops was made with actual intent to hinder, delay, or defraud Metropolis.
Upon information and belief, CBCS did not receive reasonably equivalent value in exchange for the Asset Sale.
Metropolis is asking for a jury trial, and requests that the Court enter a judgment against the Defendants that:
Avoids the Asset Sale so as to allow Metropolis to satisfy its claim(s) against CBCS
Enter a preliminary injunction preventing Defendants’ from further disposing of CBCS’s assets, including those comprising of the Asset Sale and
enjoining Defendants from relocating CBCS’s comic book grading and certification business outside the state of Florida.
CBCS is the main challenger brand in the market to CGC for slabbing and grading comic books. They have recently begun to advertise that they are powered by Beckett Media.
Metropolis Collectibles and its auction arm Comic Connect is also known for the Impossible Collection, a touring collection of some of the rarest and most valuable DC Comics in the world, as well as buying and selling some of the most valuable comics of the past several years.
Bleeding Cool requested comment from CBCS, Beckett Collectibles, and Metropolis Collectibles last week, but has received no responses to these inquiries at this time.
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