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Former AIG leader Greenberg alleges defamation by Eliot Spitzer

Posted On: Jul. 16, 2013 12:00 AM CST

Former AIG leader Greenberg alleges defamation by Eliot Spitzer

Former American International Group Inc. Chairman and CEO Maurice R. Greenberg has sued former New York Gov. Eliot L. Spitzer, alleging Mr. Spitzer made false and defamatory statements against Mr. Greenberg.

According to the lawsuit filed last week in New York State Supreme Court in Brewster, N.Y., in Maurice R. Greenberg v. Eliot L. Spitzer, Mr. Spitzer allegedly made the defamatory statements in media interviews in May and July 2012.

In a CNBC interview with host Maria Bartiromo, for instance, Mr. Spitzer said AIG “was a black box run with an iron fist by a CEO who did not tell the public the truth.”

Mr. Spitzer also said, “AIG was being led by a CEO whose accounting was fraudulent. That's why the board removed him. He paid a fine of $1.6 billion,” according to the suit.

“There has never been a dispositive court decision finding that Mr. Greenberg engaged in any wrongdoing during his tenure at AIG, much less a ruling establishing such misconduct rose to the level of 'fraud,'” according to the suit.

“Moreover, despite defendant Spitzer's vitriolic, public accusations against Mr. Greenberg on national television, neither defendant Spitzer, nor any other party, ever brought criminal charges against Mr. Greenberg. In fact, defendant Spitzer dropped a large portion of the civil allegations filed against Mr. Greenberg – including all claims that require any proof ... by the defendant “ according to the suit, which does not seek specific damages.

Mr. Spitzer, who is now running for New York City comptroller, could not be reached for comment.