FILE ART - A Marin man has been found guilty of knowingly supplying fake wine to a billionaire collector.
An entrepreneur who maintains a home in Marin County must pay $12 million to William Koch for selling the billionaire counterfeit wine, according to reports.
Eric Greenberg, an investor in tech, finance and in restaurants, also owns an 11,000-bottle wine cellar with many rare vintages, the Marin Independent Journal reported. Many of these vintages are also questionable or counterfeit, Koch alleged in a lawsuit filed in 2007.
A judge ruled in Koch's favor, ruling that Greenberg owes Koch $12 million in damages for including some bottles he knew to be counterfeit in a batch sold to Koch for $3.7 million in 2005.
Koch believes Greenberg knew the wine was phony as late as 2002, the newspaper reported, when an official at Sotheby's auction house informed him that his collection was "infected with counterfeits," the newspaper reported.
Koch says he hired an expert to inspect his newly bought wine -- and the expert, the same man who originally found the fakes, was "shocked" to see the same bottles he identified as phony among Koch's collection, the newspaper reported.
Greenberg declined to comment but said he would appeal the verdict.