Family Jewels and Cash Held Hostage
… Liz’s Trust Sues
17 minutes ago BY TMZ STAFF
One of Elizabeth Taylor‘s iconic jewelry pieces fetched almost $9 million in an auction — but the buyer backed out, and now Liz’s trust is suing famed auction house Christie’s Inc. for screwing up the deal.
Lizzie’s Taj Mahal diamond necklace — a gift from Richard Burton — was one of the items hawked during Christie’s 2011 auction … which took in a whopping $156,756,576. Problem is … the guy who bid $8,818,500 for the necklace backed out because the massive heart-shaped diamond wasn’t up to snuff for him.
Meanwhile, Christie’s had already paid Taylor’s trust for the necklace … and when the guy backed out … the auction house demanded the cash back. As you can imagine, they weren’t in the giving mood. In fact, the Taylor trust is now suing Christie’s.
According to the suit … Christie’s is holding hostage millions of dollars gained from the auction of other items — including a Bulgari ring and a Valentino fur evening bag. The Bulgari alone sold for $2.9 million.
The Taylor trust says Christie’s is strong arming — refusing to hand over cash from all the other items … unless it gets back the Taj Mahal funds.
The Taylor trust wants the court to tell Christie’s to go kick rocks.