NEW ORLEANS -- A group of New Orleans Saints fans are taking NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to federal court, seeking $80,000,000 in the damages.
Led by David James Macina, a St. Tammany resident and Saints season ticket holder, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Goodell in the U.S. District Court for the punishments meted against Saints players, coaches and management for their roles in the bounty scandal.
According to WWL-TV in New Orleans, the $80,000,000 judgment that the plaintiffs are seeking comes from the damages brought on by Goodell and the NFL from gutting the team through suspensions, which devalued tickets, and the emotional hardship fans have had to endure during the scandal.
The lawsuit contends that Mancina and other season ticket holders "purchased their tickets with the representation, and expectation, from the commissioner and the league that the Saints would be capable of competitively fielding a contending team comprised of the finest athletes, and the best coaches, under contract with the New Orleans Saints, or available to them through normal trades and draft choices, without dictatorial, unreasonable, vindictive, and unfounded, interference from the Commissioner and the League, devoid of due process."
However, after the season tickets were purchased on March 21, 2012, the league didn't inform Mancina and others season ticket holders that an investigation had been ongoing since 2009 into the illegal bounty program.
Also, that head coach Sean Payton, general manager Mickey Loomis, linebacker Jonathan Vilma and defensive end Will Smith were suspended by the league "without due process, sufficient evidence, and without consideration for the rights of the paying ticket holder Plaintiffs, and the 85,000 members of the class, summarily, without due process or credible evidence," says the lawsuit.
"(D)ue to the unfair, prejudicial, unreasonable, and vindictive" actions by Goodell and the NFL, those suspensions severely damaged the on-field product and the value of the season tickets to Macina and other participants in the class action lawsuit.
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