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Arnold & Porter Secures Victory for Sotheby’s in Art Fraud Suit

January 31, 2024

Arnold & Porter secured a major victory for Sotheby's on January 30, 2024, when a jury in the Southern District of New York decided in favor of the auction house, clearing Sotheby's of any liability related to an alleged multimillion-dollar fraud.

Sotheby's was accused in a civil trial of colluding with art dealer Yves Bouvier to sell works of art to a Russian oligarch at extremely inflated prices ranging in the tens of millions of dollars. The art at issue included masterpieces by Magritte, Modigliani, Klimt, and Leonardo Da Vinci. The alleged fraud had been considered one of the largest art frauds in history, valued at up to $1 billion. The Arnold & Porter team has represented Sotheby's in this matter since 2015, which involved a complete and extensive investigation, working closely with prosecutors in their parallel investigations, and steering litigation in multiple countries around the world.

The Arnold & Porter team was led by Marcus Asner, co-chair of the firm's White Collar Defense & Investigations practice, and partner Sara Shudofsky. The team also included senior associate Benjamin Wolverton and associates Sahrula Kubie, Renata Politanski, and Yiqing Shi.