Bill Gross’ California neighbor may not have liked that he played music at his oceanfront house — but that doesn’t mean it was as loud as his neighbor claims, the bond king’s lawyer argued. In her closing argument in the billionaire investor’s bitter lega
Author: Noah Manskar
Published: 2020-12-17 02:08 pm
Bill Gross’ lawyer claims neighbors just ‘don’t want music playing’
nypost.com

Bill Gross’ California neighbor may not have liked that he played music at his oceanfront house — but that doesn’t mean it was earsplitting like his neighbor claims, the bond king’s lawyer argued.

In her closing argument in the billionaire investor’s bitter legal battle with neighbor Mark Towfiq, attorney Jill Basinger cast the tech entrepreneur as an oversensitive killjoy who exaggerated complaints about loud music emanating from Gross’ home.

“They don’t want music playing on their yard. It bothers them,” Basinger said of Towfiq and his wife during a Wednesday court hearing, according to a transcript. “Well, I’m sorry, but that’s not what the law is. … It’s not done to harass them. They play music they like.”

In testimony earlier this week, Gross denied that he blared the “Gilligan’s Island” theme and other songs to get back at Towfiq for complaining to local authorities about an ugly protective net Gross installed over a glass sculpture on his Laguna Beach property.

Gross, 76, has in turn accused Towfiq of spying on him and his girlfriend, Amy Schwartz, by videotaping them and pointing surveillance cameras at their house, allegations Towfiq has disputed.

Towfiq’s attorney, Chase Scolnick, said the music was part of the PIMCO founder’s “calculated and cruel campaign” to intimidate Towfiq into dropping the complaint. He noted that the music’s volume was documented in video recordings and by local cops who visited the property.

(image)
Mark Towfiq (C-R) and wife Carol Nakahara (C-L)
AFP via Getty Images

“They’re prisoners in their own house,” Scolnick said in court. “Their anxiety [and] discomfort is overwhelming. They’ve lost sleep. They’ve lost appetite.”

Scolnick asked Orange County Superior Court Judge Kimberly Knill to issue a three-year restraining order banning Gross and Schwartz from playing music outdoors when there’s no one in the home’s backyard or pool area.

But Basinger contends Gross and Schwartz are well within their rights to kick back and enjoy some tunes in the fresh air. She asked for a restraining order to stop Towfiq from recording the couple with his iPhone or other cameras.

“The purpose of their home is the outdoor living,” Basinger said. “It is an open floor plan. They listen to music. But there’s no evidence that this music is quote-unquote loud.”

The bizarre months-long feud could soon come to an end — Knill said she would announce her decision in the case at a Dec. 23 hearing.

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