Looks like we've got a nice art caper on our hands! That lawsuit that was just filed against an art courier, who claimed to have lost a $1.35MM painting after a bender, has been dropped. The majority owner of the painting, Kristyn Trudgeon, was the one who filed the suit against an art courier when her Jean Baptiste Camille Corot oil painting went missing. The courier was hired by Thomas Doyle, her lover and the minority owner of the painting. Got that straight? Okay, so the courier's name is James Haggerty, and he allegedly lost the painting after having a few too many drinks at The Mark Hotel, after he failed to sell the painting to a potential buyer he met at the bar there.
So naturally, Haggerty was the target of Trudgeon's lawsuit—especially since he couldn't account for the over 90 minutes it took for him to get from the bar to his apartment the night the painting went missing. But why wasn't Doyle, as part owner of the painting, in on the lawsuit against him? Well, today the Daily News reports that Doyle is an art thief! Even more shocking, Trudgeon knew this all along, but despite knowing that he just got out of jail after stealing a $600,000 statue by Degas, she told the press yesterday, "He's a very honest, upstanding man. He's totally legit."
Trudgeon allegedly still wants to sue Haggerty, but says her lawyer is withdrawing suit. Her lawyer says that a police report was never filed when the painting went missing, which sounds suspect, so this probably isn't the last we've heard from these three.
By the way, Trudgeon is offering a $25,000 reward, no questions asked, for the return of the painting. She says, "Either that, or wait 200 years to sell it."