District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine has sued the Washington Commander again, this time over allegations that the team ran a “decades-long unlawful scheme” to hold back ticket deposits.
The consumer protection lawsuit was filed in Superior Court for the District of Columbia, exactly a week after Racine filed a civil complaint against the team for its role in allegedly impeding inquiries into hostile workplace investigations.
“The Commanders’ arrogance and blatant disregard for the law is a slap in the face to District residents who have supported the team for decades,” Racine said in a statement. “We deserve better, and today my office is taking action yet again to hold them accountable.”
Commanders owner Dan Snyder, the NFL, and Commissioner Roger Goodell are listed as defendants in the first lawsuit, which used the same broad consumer protection law in D.C. to establish jurisdiction.
The latest lawsuit only has the Commanders listed as a defendant, and it doesn’t mention Syder once.
The complaint alleges the Commanders “improperly withheld hundreds of thousands of dollars in security deposits from hundreds of District consumers.” As of March, the team still held nearly $200,000 in unreturned deposits from D.C. residents, according to the lawsuit.
“The team has not accepted security deposits for over 20 years in the case of premium tickets and over a decade in the case of suites, and we began returning them to season ticket holders as early as 2004,” a Commanders spokesperson said in a statement to Front Office Sports. “In 2014, as part of a comprehensive review, Team management was instructed to send notices to over 1,400 customers with deposits and return all security deposits requested.
“Further, the team engaged an outside law firm and forensic auditors to conduct an extensive review of the team’s accounts which found no evidence that the team intentionally withheld security deposits that should have been returned to customers or that the team improperly converted any unclaimed deposits to revenue.”
In a letter sent by the House Oversight Committee to the Federal Trade Commission in April, the Commanders allegedly held around $5 million of unreturned deposits as of July 2016.