Judge Takes Field Trip to Decide Rich Guys’ Crazy Petty Feud
A petty feud between a billionaire and his not-quite-as-rich neighbor over noise has gotten so nasty that a California judge had to leave her courtroom for a field trip to Laguna Beach and trade in her gavel for a decibel meter.
The surreal scene—Orange County Judge Kimberly Knill in her formal robes, followed by a gaggle of attorneys and court staff, inspecting outdoor speakers and listening to the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean—was the latest weird twist in a dispute between bond king Bill Gross and tech entrepreneur Mark Towfiq.
The inspection was sparked by an incident in July in which Towfiq called the police to allege that Gross was ignoring a previous court order to stop harassing him with grotesquely loud music. Gross’ attorney maintains that Towfiq is “exploiting” the restraining order and using it as “a weapon in his perverse obsession with Bill and Amy Gross.”