BOSTON — A lawyer for the families of two men allegedly gunned down by former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez will ask a judge to bar the football team from paying Hernandez a $3.25 million contract signing bonus.
A hearing is scheduled Wednesday in Suffolk Superior Court on a request for a preliminary injunction.
Aaron Hernandez has filed a grievance seeking a $3.25 million bonus, plus $82,000 owed to him by the Patriots, according to a lawsuit filed by the families of two men he is accused of killing in 2012.
Hernandez is accused of fatally shooting Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in 2012, just weeks before he signed a 5-year, $40 million contract.
William Kennedy, an attorney representing the men’s families in wrongful death lawsuits, said the Patriots have challenged Hernandez’s right to receive the bonus. But Kennedy said he wants a court order in case the team is ordered to pay Hernandez.
According to the lawsuit filed by Kennedy, Hernandez has filed a grievance seeking the money, plus $82,000 owed to him by the team.
Kennedy also wants the court to freeze Hernandez’s assets. Each of the lawsuits is seeking $6 million in damages.
“It’s really a motion to prevent any further payments to be made by the New England Patriots to Mr. Hernandez pending any further action of the court,” Kennedy said. “What we’re looking to do is preserve as much as we possibly can — any assets — for the satisfaction of the families of the two decedents.”
Hernandez’s attorney in the wrongful death lawsuits, John Fitzpatrick, said in court papers that the attempt to prevent the team from paying Hernandez is “fundamentally unfair” because Hernandez needs the money to pay for his defense in the three killings and the civil cases.
Depriving Hernandez access to his earnings “would impair his state and federal constitutional rights to counsel and to due process,” the response said.
Photo via Steve Senne/Associated Press