The ongoing litigation among the members of the Angelos family, who own the Orioles, have been dropped according to court documents first obtained by the Baltimore Sun’s Jeff Barker. The documents state Georgia Angelos and her sons, John and Louis, have agreed that “all claims, including all counterclaims and defenses, asserted therein be dismissed with prejudice.” The term “with prejudice,” from a legal vantage point, indicates that the charges within cannot be re-filed and that the case cannot be brought back to the courts at a future date. Specifics regarding the agreement to drop the suit were not provided.
Peter Angelos, now 93, headed up the ownership group and was the Orioles’ control person until 2018, when he began to cede more responsibility to his sons as his own health began to decline. Both John and Louis have held roles within the organization prior to that point and in the years since. John was formally approved by the league’s other owners as the Orioles’ new control person following the 2020 season.
The original lawsuit, filed by Louis, alleged that John had blocked his mother’s wishes to sell the team and that the two of them had taken control of the 93-year-old Peter Angelos’ assets — both the team and the family law firm — at Louis’ expense. The initial complaint from Louis alleged the following:
“John intends to maintain absolute control over the Orioles — to manage, to sell, or, if he chooses, to move to Tennessee (where he has a home and where his wife’s career is headquartered) — without having to answer to anyone.”
Georgia had subsequently filed a countersuit against Louis, alleging that he’d fabricated his claims in his own attempt to seize control of the family’s assets. Georgia’s suit sought to remove Louis as a successor and hold him liable for breach of fiduciary duty as well as exploitation of his father.
Needless to say, it’s been a bitter and ugly saga — the entire truth of his which may never fully come to light. John has vehemently denied the allegations made against him and has declared dating back to last June that the Orioles will remain in Baltimore for the long-term.
That said, following the Orioles’ decision to decline a five-year extension of their lease at Camden Yards, there’s some understandable unease among fans. The team says it plans to continue negotiating toward an even longer-term agreement to remain in Baltimore and remain at Camden Yards, where the current lease is set to expire on Dec. 31. John Angelos and Maryland governor Wes Moore both spoke optimistically over the weekend about striking an arrangement that would keep the Orioles at Camden Yards.
The now-resolved legal turmoil among the members of the Angelos family was just one of multiple legal battles surrounding the club. The Orioles and Nationals have been tied up in litigation regarding television rights fees from the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network, which broadcasts both their games, for more than a decade now. The Angelos family owns the majority share of MASN — roughly 77% — while the Nationals hold a 23% stake. Back in 2019, an arbitrator ruled that the network owed $105MM in unpaid rights fees to the Nats, but the subsequent MASN appeal of that ruling has not yet been heard. There’s no clear timeline for when a resolution might be reached.