The Maryland Attorney General’s office has reached a settlement with the Washington Commanders after the team was accused of failing to refund security deposits to ticket holders, it announced Friday.
The settlement requires the commanders to refund all remaining security deposits and pay a $250,000 fine.
Attorney General Brian Frosh claims the team was meant to return security deposits collected from season and luxury suite ticket holders but failed to do so within the required 30 days. Instead, the team allegedly returned deposits only to ticket holders who made a written request, a violation of the Consumer Protection Act.
“For many years, the commanders kept money that wasn’t theirs. It belongs to their customers,” Attorney General Frosh said. “Today’s settlement will require the team to return the money owed to consumers. The commanders will pay a fine and will be required to engage in similar practices in the future.”
The settlement does not exempt the bosses from separate lawsuits stemming from the allegations.
DC Attorney General Karl A. Racine announced Thursday that his office is also suing Commanders over the alleged kickback scheme, in addition to a separate case announced a week before Nov. 10.
Making sense of the Commanders’ suits
In 2020, over 40 women, including former employees and cheerleaders, came forward to accuse owner Dan Snyder and Commander’s executives of sexual misconduct. Snyder himself initially hired an outside attorney to investigate, but that was quickly taken over by Goodell and the NFL. To see also : NFL World Reacts To Best Cheerleader Swimsuit Photos. The investigation found that for years the commanders fostered a hostile work environment that particularly affected women and commonly included bullying, intimidation and sexual harassment up through the organization’s top ranks. However, no written report was ever published.
Lawsuits over the alleged cash-in scheme came as Congress investigated the commanders for workplace misconduct. Jason Friedman, Commanders’ former longtime VP of sales and customer service, testified before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform about the scheme in March, turning over numerous spreadsheets and other documents. The committee wrote a letter to the Federal Trade Commission just a month later, accusing them of hiding revenue from the NFL for over a decade by withholding security deposits. The Attorneys General of Maryland, D.C. and Virginia launched parallel investigations.
This investigation into Commanders’ workplace misconduct is what sparked the D.C. attorney general’s filing on Nov. 10, which alleges that Commanders, Snyder, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and the NFL “collated to defraud fans” by allegedly covering up workplace and sexual relations. allegations of misconduct against the team.
Dan Snyder is co-owner of the Washington Commanders. (Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post via Getty Images)