Major League Baseball has demanded the right to question hedge fund Highbridge Principal Strategies, which floated a $150 million loan to Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt to keep the team afloat through bankruptcy proceedings.
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The fund, owned by J.P. Morgan, collected a "surreptitious" $5.25 million fee that the lender and baseball team’s owner have intentionally withheld from the court, according to a court filing.
"It is our understanding that the undisclosed fee was provided for in a side fee letter between Highbridge and the [team] that has not been filed with the Court or made part of the record in any fashion," MLB attorneys said in a memo filed Friday with the US Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del.
The letter was reported by Dow Jones Daily Bankruptcy Review on Monday.
MLB has offered what it believes to be much more agreeable financing. But McCourt has said that he will not accept any help from the league, viewing such offers as a way to eventually wrestle control of the franchise from him.
The league argued in the court document that learning more about the terms of Highbridge’s loan has become critical now that the Dodgers have said they will no longer make McCourt available for a deposition.