What to Know
- The new ownership of the team is claiming the organization is citizens of the country in a dispute with Miami and Miami-Dade County.
- The case involving the team and both municipalities is over money both the city and county say they are owed from the sale of the team.
The British Virgin Islands Marlins?
As weird as it may sound, that is where the new ownership of the team is claiming the organization is citizens of in a legal dispute with the city of Miami and Miami-Dade County.
According to the Miami Herald, Marlins Teamco – the company formed by current CEO and former MLB star Derek Jerer and majority owner Bruce Sherman – told a federal judge that one corporation who owns part of the team is based in the territory of just over 28,000 people, which they say means the team has citizenship there.
Why the claim now?
The case involving the team and both municipalities – over money both the city and county say they are owed from the sale of the team last October as per their agreement with former majority owner Jeffrey Loria to help finance Marlins Park in 2009 – is currently being heard in a Miami-Dade circuit court, which has sided against the team.
Miami-Dade County owns the stadium while the city owns the parking garages surrounding it. The county in February said it was suing over the team "refusing to make 5 percent equity payment to the county” after the $1.2 billion sale.
If the Marlins are successful in their claim, the case would then be removed from Miami-Dade and be heard by a federally appointed arbitrator under rules applied for international disputes.
Lawyers for Loria claim the former owner took a loss in the deal, with the paper reporting the art dealer being out $140 million according to his records. The county’s records say the former owners made $600 in profits.