NEW YORK CITY-Lawyers representing developer Henry Weinstein won two legal actions in the New York State Appeals Court that will give Weinstein the right to go ahead with eviction proceedings of another Brooklyn developer, Jeshayahu Boymelgreen, and Forest City Ratner Cos.

The unanimous decision reverses a March 2007 ruling from Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Ira Harkavy that allowed Boymelgreen to remain as an occupant, despite the termination of his lease. The decision also gives Weinstein the right to sue Boymelgreen and FCRC for monetary judgments. The decision says FCRC was given an illegal assignment to two properties by the lessee Boymelgreen in violation of the lease terms, which required the landlord’s legal approval to assign.

Regardless of this latest legal challenge, a spokeswoman for Empire State Development Corp., which is involved with FCRC’s Atlantic Yards project, tells that the decision did not impact its plans at the site at all. In fact, she says the organization hopes to acquire all the Weinstein property in 2009.

Court documents say that the subject properties are within the area proposed to be developed as the Atlantic Yards Arena and Redevelopment Project.

The lead attorney for Weinstein, David Brody, of Borah, Goldstein, Altschuler, Nahins & Godel, PC, tells that FCRC’s Bruce Ratner “recorded his option for the assignment of the buildings, then he recorded certain other things and all for purposes of allowing him to represent to the ESDC that he controlled the property in terms of the Atlantic Yards project.”

Standing firm, the ESDC spokesperson tells that in fact, FCRC “did not misrepresent its position to ESDC, as it believed it had a valid assignment of Boymelgreen’s lease hold interest in the premises. The courts, however, disagreed.”

Regardless, the ruling is the latest in a volley of legal and financial obstacles creating roadblocks in the development and construction of Brooklyn’s Atlantic Yards project.

While FCRC didn’t return calls for comment by press time, a spokesperson from Boymelgreen’s law firm, Herrick Feinstein, tells Globe “the decision and all options are being reviewed.”

Brody tells that while his client may not win in the end, the ruling at least provides an opportunity for discovery to see how far up the ladder they can go. “Boymelgreen illegally assigned the lease to Ratner,” he says.

Brody says he and his client are now pushing for an eviction. Next, he says, they will ask for a hearing to establish the difference between the properties’ present-day value and its former value when the lease was terminated in July 2006.

“The lower court had said [the original lease assignment] was wrong and it terminated the lease, but, it wouldn’t give us a judgment of eviction,” Brody says. “Further, it wouldn’t give us a hearing of damages under the lease.”

Brody says that under the lease, Weinstein “has the right to go in and inspect his property.” But he adds Weinstein has even encountered difficulties when he visited his properties.

He says that Weinstein’s desire has been to be left alone and to be allowed to own his property and develop it as he sees fit. “That’s what this is really about for him,” Brody says.

Nonetheless, over the past few years, some observers have questioned Weinstein’s motives in the Atlantic Yards saga, including Boymelgreen. In March ’07, after Weinstein had won the initial lawsuit, Boymelgreen told the Brooklyn Paper that “Weinstein is just pure business. Most people on the block just want to see how much they can take from Ratner.” The Brooklyn Paper also quoted Boymelgreen as saying “if you ask Weinstein face to face, he’ll say it, unless he has a good poker face.”

To which Brody responds, “I find it amusing when billionaires are poking at millionaires.” He adds that Weinstein’s view through all this is that “he simply wants to own his buildings. He wants to own and operate his properties; that’s what this is all about for him.”

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.

GlobeSt. Multifamily Fall 2024Event

Join the industry's top owners, investors, developers, brokers & financiers at THE MULTIFAMILY EVENT OF THE YEAR!

Get More Information


Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join now!

  • Free unlimited access to's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2024 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.