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Jayme Gordon, who claimed Dreamworks stole Kung Fu Panda from him and wanted a $12 million settlement was sentenced yesterday to two years in federal prison. The Massachusetts judge also ordered Gordon to repay Dreamworks more than $3 million in restitution, the amount that Dreamworks spent defending itself from Gordon’s frivolous lawsuit.
So what crime did Jayme Gordon commit?
Gordon didn’t just claim that Dreamworks stole his idea, but he also created new artwork after watching the Kung Fu Panda trailer in 2008, and backdated those artwork to make it appear that he had created the artwork first.
Dreamworks’ lawyers caught Gordon’s lie after they discovered that Gordon’s artwork was actually traced out of a Lion King coloring book from 1996. (During the trial, Gordon even claimed to have created the storyline for Disney’s The Lion King.)
During the course of the litigation, Gordon intentionally deleted relevant evidence from his computer, and also fabricated and backdated sketches that served as support for his suit.
Legal experts in intellectual property cases believe that Gordon walked away with a relatively light sentence, compared to the maximum amount of prison time he could have received.
The Judge reduced the sentence to two years (as per Boston Globe report), as she suspected that Gordon could be suffering from autism or other mental health disorders. She ordered Gordon to be held at a prison hospital where he can receive psychiatric care and alcohol abuse treatment.
Skidoosh…I guess, this will serve as a good deterrent to all the fraudsters.