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Dec 23, 2013 12:29 PM EST | Shane Jordan
A year ago, everyone praised Elle Macpherson for rushing to the side of her then estranged billionaire boyfriend, Jeffrey Soffer, 46, following his near fatal helicopter crash. The crash, which happened in the Baker’s Bay resort area of the Bahamas, injured four other passengers and fatally injured Soffer’s best friend, attorney Lance Valdez. Now it seems, however, Jeffery could be directly and solely responsible for the incident. A $100 million wrongful death suit filed by Valdez’s widow, Daria, alleges just that. Valdez and her lawyer claim that not only did Soffer try to lie about his culpability, but that Elle was also a willing conspirator.
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Though no one argues whether or not there was a pilot present in the vehicle when the helicopter took off that fateful day last Thanksgiving, the suit claims that Soffer was at the controls the entire time from takeoff to crash. The document states that Soffer, who was an unlicensed pilot at the time, was “recklessly flying and controlling” the helicopter in an attempt to get near enough to the ground to “show off his house and yacht”. That apparently is when a sudden gust of wind caused the pilot to lose control and the helicopter to plummet.
Soffer left the country immediately following the crash, making sure that he would not be around for any subsequent investigations. That was the beginning of the real funny business. The suit contends that Joffers then contacted the pilot and offered him a monthly salary of between $8,000 and $10,000 to claim he had been at the control at the time of the accident.
Court papers then state that Daria Valdez was then pressured by Soffer and associates to accept a $2 million insurance payment for agreeing to sign a release form indicating that he bore no responsibility of any kind for Valdez’s death.
That is when Macpherson started to call mutual friends to turn up the social pressure. According to Star, the suit claims she told a friend of Valdez:
“‘[She] told him that [Jeffery] was annoyed about Daria’s delay in sgning the release...He doesn’t have to do this you know?’”
What do you think? Should the rich be able to get away with anything? Or are you responsible for your actions no matter how rich you are?
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