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Mellen, Inc. v. Biltmore Loan & Jewelry-Scottsdale, LLC

2017 WL 1133031 (2017)

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Mellen, Inc. v. Biltmore Loan & Jewelry-Scottsdale, LLC

United States District Court for the District of Arizona

2017 WL 1133031 (2017)

Facts

Mellen, Inc. (plaintiff) was a wholesale diamond dealer that owned a four-carat blue diamond worth nearly $2 million. Concerning a potential future sale of the diamond, Mellen entered into a memorandum agreement with Scott Meyrowitz, a fellow diamond dealer, and sent the diamond to him for examination and inspection by potential purchasers and on the express condition that Mellen remain the owner of the diamond. Meyrowitz acquired no right to sell or otherwise dispose of the diamond without Mellen’s authorization. Meyrowitz subsequently introduced Joe Gutekunst, a friend and vitamin salesman who purported to own the diamond, to David Goldstein, the owner of Biltmore Loan & Jewelry-Scottsdale, LLC (defendant), to facilitate a $1 million loan between them with the diamond as collateral. Biltmore wired $1 million to Gutekunst, who in turn transferred $955,000 to Meyrowitz. Biltmore later purchased the diamond outright from Gutekunst for $1.3 million, a portion of which was paid by forgiving the loan. Suit was brought to determine lawful ownership of the diamond. Biltmore argued that it had good title to the diamond under both the good-faith-purchaser rule and entrustment rule set forth in the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC).

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Rayes, J.)

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