A federal judge stopped the sale of some high-priced golf memorabilia after a federal lawsuit was filed by Augusta National Golf Club.
Bidding for Byron Nelson’s Masters green jacket as well as two other member jackets had been slated to close over the weekend but on Thursday, a judge went along with the club’s request that Green Jacket Auctions pull the plug. The club says the items weren’t supposed to have left the grounds and that they are either stolen or fraudulent.
Green Jacket says Augusta’s claim of ownership is off-base but took the items out of the auction after the court order. The Nelson jacket was expected to sell for well into six figures. The auction company specializes in golf memorabilia and has sold green jackets in the past including one presented to Horton Smith, who won two of the first three Masters tournaments in the 1930s. That one sold for over $682,000.
The company posted a note on its website stating,
As a result of the pending lawsuit brought by the Augusta National Golf Club, Lots 1-3 are temporarily unavailable.
We reaffirm our belief that Augusta National is attempting to assert ownership claims to every green jacket ever produced, regardless of who currently owns or possesses the jackets. Obviously, we dispute such claims. Indeed, we stand ready to litigate the matter to the fullest extent necessary.
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