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Oakland to Pay $4 Million, End Its Fight With Raiders

October 13, 1988|Associated Press

OAKLAND — The city of Oakland will end its eight-year legal battle with the Los Angeles Raiders by paying the football team $4 million to settle a damage suit, city officials said Wednesday.

"This settlement marks the end of Oakland's dealings with the Raiders organization," said a statement issued jointly by Mayor Lionel Wilson and City Atty. Jayne Williams.

The settlement was reached Friday in Monterey County Superior Court.

The Raiders had sought $26 million in damages from the city, claiming that Oakland deprived them of revenue from attendance and broadcasts in its attempt to block the team's move to Los Angeles and then get it back.

In 1980, Oakland filed an eminent domain lawsuit in an attempt to take control of the team and prevent its move, but the Raiders went south in 1982. Oakland later lost its legal challenges and appeals.

Despite the enormous difference between what the team sought and the amount agreed to Friday, Williams refrained from calling the settlement a victory for Oakland.

"Overall, it was a good settlement, but it represents a significant payout for the city," she said.

Under the agreement, Oakland will pay $1 million this year and $1 million each year for the next three years with the unpaid balance accruing 6% interest.

Oakland also has been ordered by a state appellate court to pay the Raiders' lawyers $3.2 million in legal fees. The city will now petition the court to let it pay the teams' attorneys in installments "over an extended period of time," Williams said.

The settlement does not affect a federal antitrust lawsuit brought by the Raiders against the National Football League.

That suit claims the NFL illegally tried to restrain trade by interfering with the team's move to Los Angeles.

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