"You don't get to argue with me," says US District judge
The American land casino mogul Sheldon Adelson has spent the last three days in a Las Vegas court being questioned about his company's practices and the dismissal in 2010 of former Sands China CEO Steve Jacobs, who is suing the billionaire.
The litigation is focused on whether the American or Macau judicial systems should hear the case, and it is clear that Adelson favours the latter. Jacobs, on the other hand, contends that Adelson effectively controlled the running of his Macau casinos from Las Vegas, and the case should therefore be heard in the United States.
Perhaps because he is used to being listened to rather than having to answer questions, Adelson has exhibited signs of frustration, annoyance and, according to some media reports, arrogance in his appearances over the last three days of the week.
Reports suggest he has been combative, evasive, dismissive, abrasive and prone to lecturing the lawyers questioning him on what they could and should not explore.
On Friday he went a little too far, according to a report in The Guardian newspaper, disagreeing with presiding officer US District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez, over whether he had to answer a question.
Judge Gonzalez quickly put the ageing billionaire in his place, saying, "Sir, you don't get to argue with me. You understand that?"
Adelson's company is facing accusations of links to organised crime and of laundering tens of millions of dollars from a suspected drug trafficker, triggered by the company's allegedly wrongful dismissal of Jacobs four years ago.
The former Sands China CEO claims he was dismissed because he called a halt to what he felt were excessive payments of hundreds of millions of dollars to a Macau lawyer and legislator, Leonel Alves, on the grounds these might be in breach of US anti-bribery laws.
The hearing continues next Monday.
Online Casino News Courtesy of Infopowa