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Disgraced ex-NBA referee wins Florida lawsuit

Associated Press Modified: June 18, 2012 at 7:06 pm •  Published: June 18, 2012

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — A Florida jury has awarded a disgraced former NBA referee $1.3 million in a lawsuit against the company that published his memoir.

Tim Donaghy sued Shawna Vercher and her company, VTi Group, in Pinellas County civil court, saying he hadn't been paid. The now-defunct company published Donaghy's 2010 book about referees and the NBA.

On Friday, a jury found Vercher's company liable for breach of contract. Vercher and her company were also cited by the jury for conspiracy to commit civil theft, civil theft, intentional infliction of emotional distress and tortious interference with business relations.

A court hearing on the judgment will be held in the coming weeks.

Donaghy said in an email that he and his children were "thrilled" with the verdict and that he looked forward to collecting on the judgment.

"My four daughters are thrilled that the truth surrounding the disappearance of the profits of my book Personal Foul is officially on record," Donaghy wrote, noting the jury returned quickly with a verdict in his favor.

"It was a long wait, but it feels terrific knowing that we prevailed and we are moving forward with the truth on our side," he added.

When reached by phone, Vercher said she is limited in what she can talk about because she and her lawyers are planning an appeal.

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