NBA Lakers player Kobe Bryant and his mother are in the midst of a legal feud over high school items his mother has attempted to auction.
The items are mementos that belonged to the pro basketball player while he was growing up. Keepsakes include uniforms, rings and trophies that could be worth over a million dollars. His mother claims that Bryant had no interest in the items years ago.
Goldin Auctions in Berlin, N.J. issued an advertisement for the auctions on Tuesday, but Bryant's lawyer responded later that day with a cease and desist order. In the letter, Mark Campbell requests that the auction house return Bryant's items to their rightful owner.
"Mr. Bryant's personal property has ended up in the possession of someone who does not lawfully own it," Campbell said in a statement according to the Associated Press.
In turn, the auction house filed a lawsuit on Thursday seeking permission to sell the items, which have already been scheduled for a June auction. In part of the court order, Goldin alleges that Bryant had previously given the items to his mother.
''Kobe Bryant indicated to Pamela Bryant that the items belonged to her and that he had no interest in them,'' the auction house's attorneys wrote. The report claims that the items have been sitting in a $1,500-per-month New Jersey storage unit ever since.
Pamela Bryant received a $450,000 check from the auction house as down payment for the items to be auctioned, with additional profit to be made after the sale. Because of this and the fact that money has already been spent on advertisements to promote the auction, Goldin has claimed that the event cannot be canceled. But regardless, Bryant's lawyer showed hope that the case could be resolve in court.
"We look forward to resolving this legal matter through the legal system," he said.