Fotis Dulos, the ex-husband of missing Connecticut mother Jennifer, testified on Wednesday that he believes he is still entitled to money from her family despite the fact he is charged in her disappearance.
Dulos took the stand for a second day on Wednesday as part of a civil dispute with Jennifer’s mother, Gloria Farber.
She is suing him for $2.5million which she claims he owes her in unpaid loans from her late husband, Fotis’ former father-in-law, Hilliard who died in January 2017.
Hilliard gave Dulos the loan when he and Jennifer were still married to advance his property construction business.
He had been loaning him money since 2004, the lawsuit claims, which Dulos would use to buy properties to flip. Their proposed deal was that once Dulos had re-sold the properties for a profit, he paid off the loan.
Despite having an affair and Jennifer filing for divorce in 2017, plus the fact that he has been charged with tampering with evidence in her disappearance, Dulos said he still thinks he should be entitled to money from his ex’s family.
Fotis Dulos, the ex-husband of missing Connecticut mother Jennifer, testified on Wednesday that he believes he is still entitled to money from her family despite the fact he is charged in her disappearance. He appears to get emotional at his lawyer’s table during the hearing
Dulos took the stand for a second day on Wednesday as part of a civil dispute with Jennifer’s mother, Gloria Farber. He is seen being comforted by his legal team
Dulos ducked questions from the media as he left the Connecticut court on the second day of the court case
‘That was the agreement,’ he said during cross-examination on Wednesday, claiming he had an ‘agreement’ with Hilliard that he would receive money every year.
As he left court, Fotis spoke briefly to reporters to say: ‘All I want to say is that I wish Jennifer and her family happy holidays.’
The lawsuit was filed in February 2018, more than a year before Jennifer disappeared.
It will now be in briefing for the next two weeks.
After the day’s testimony, Dulos’ attorney Norm Pattis spoke outside court to say they were happy the chapter was ‘over’.
No decision has been reached yet.
Fotis then told reporters: ‘First of all I’d like to thank my counsel. He’s done an incredible job.
‘I don’t have much to say. There’s a gag order that prevents me from speaking about anything really.
‘All I want to say is that I wish Jennifer and her family happy holidays. I just pray that they give my kids my love and best wishes.’
Dulos in Connecticut Superior Court on Wednesday for a second day of testimony
Fotis is being sued by his former mother-in-law, Gloria Farber, who says her late husband Hilliard (pictured together) gave him a $2.5million loan which he has never repaid
2004: Fotis Dulos and Jennifer Farber get married. It is his second marriage
In the same year, her father Hilliard starts loaning him money for his property business, Fore Group.
2015: Fotis and Michelle Troconis start taking trips he paid for which he claimed were for business. They later start an affair.
January 2017: Hilliard Farber dies
March 2017: Gloria Farber takes over his estate
June 2017: Jennifer files for divorce, saying she is afraid of her husband
February 2018: Gloria Farber sues Fotis Dulos for unpaid loans
May 24 2019: Jennifer vanishes after dropping off her five children at school
June 2019: Fotis and Michelle Troconis are arrested for evidence tampering
Gloria Farber files an order for custody of the children.
August 2019: Troconis ‘turns’ on Dulos in police interviews, admits she lied when she said she had an alibi for him
September 2019: Fotis is arrested again for evidence tampering
Jennifer has been missing since May 24 when she vanished after dropping off the children’s five kids at school.
Police say he was ‘lying in wait’ for her but they have no proof that he harmed her.
They charged him with evidence tampering and have claimed he and Michelle Troconis, his girlfriend, dumped bags which contained clothes that belonged to Jennifer at various locations in Connecticut the night she vanished.
Jennifer’s body has not been found.
The civil lawsuit predates her disappearance. It was filed in February 2018 by Jennifer’s mother, Gloria.
She is now looking after the couple’s five children.
After testifying on Tuesday that his late former father-in-law Hilliard told him he never had to repay the money, Dulos’ lawyer made a bold claim outside court.
‘The amount of money that flowed both ways, it’s going to make it almost impossible to say who owes what to whom and if you did the math there, it appears that the Farber estate owes Mr. Dulos money but that’s not a claim we’re prepared to press.
‘I think that the state has attempted to drape this case in motive and animosity.
‘It strikes me that the animosity goes the other way around,’ Norm Pattis said.
Jennifer’s mother’s lawyers have objected to his attempts to have the family’s tax returns submitted as part of the case.
They say Fotis is conducting a ‘fishing expedition’ to determine how much money Jennifer is entitled to.
Because their divorce was never finalized, he is still legally her heir and if it is determined that she is dead, he would be entitled to any assets in her name, they said in a court filing.
In a risky and unorthodox move on Tuesday, Fotis decided to take the stand in that case, despite exposing himself to questions about Jennifer, their marriage and their life which could later be used against him in the criminal trial.
A forensic accountant also told the court he had been paying for flights for him, Troconis, and Troconis’ son to exotic locations since 2015 – two years before Jennifer filed for divorce.
On Wednesday, his business expenses were pored over more extensively.
Gloria’s attorneys asked him why he had charged dinners at Nobu in Miami and Chevy Suburbans for his babysitter to his business accounts.
Fotis looked pensive at times during his testimony. He maintains he has done nothing to his wife and should be able to keep all the money his estranged in-laws gave him
Dulos arriving in court on Wednesday. He maintains that he neither had anything to do with his ex-wife’s disappearance, or that he owes her family money
He also charged dinners in Greece and Spain to the company.
He and Troconis had been having an affair but he resolved to save his marriage after Jennifer found out. She then later filed for divorce.
According to The New York Post, Dulos was surprised when the flights were brought up in court on Tuesday.
His criminal attorney, Norm Pattis, who was there to watch the proceedings, put his head in his hands, the newspaper reported.
Fotis himself took the stand.
He was at first questioned about his business and his relationship with his late father-in-law, Hilliard, who he said was ‘like a second father to him’.
He said that in the beginning, the money was intended as a loan but that as he progressed in business, Hilliard said he no longer had to pay him back.
While it was not about Jennifer’s disappearance, anything he says about their marriage could be used as part of the criminal case.
Gloria Farber, his mother-in-law, was not in court. She is looking after the couple’s five children
Gloria is shown entering her home in Manhattan while her lawyers argued with Fotus in court
Early on Tuesday morning, his attorney Norm Pattis told CBS This Morning: ‘These commercial transactions took place years ago.
‘We don’t think they shed any light whatsoever on the criminal allegations,’ he said.
Jennifer’s mother sued Fotis in January 2018, 18 months before she vanished, claiming he had reneged on business loans that their family gave him.
He has dismissed their claims in interviews saying he does not owe them anything.
Fotis’ girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, (pictured in October) is also expected to testify at the civil trial. She too has been charged with evidence tampering. Police say she has admitted making up an alibi for Dulos on the day Jennifer disappeared
Since her disappearance, the family has issued multiple statements to express their pain and asking for information which could lead to solving the mystery of what happened to her.
Jennifer’s friends have outwardly pointed the finger at Fotis and have asked him to reveal where her body is.
He has vehemently denied having anything to do with her disappearance and says the case has anguished him because it is keeping him from his five children.
His girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, is also expected to testify as part of the civil lawsuit.
Police say she turned on Dulos by admitting in an interview in August that she had lied when she said she was with him for the duration of the morning Jennifer vanished.
Dulos’ attorneys have accused the police of unethical leaks and say it is unorthodox for them to level so much against him without charging him.
The judge issued a gag order preventing both sides from speaking about the criminal case, but Pattis has repeatedly flouted it.
The first witness called on Tuesday was retired attorney John Schmitt who was the executor of Jennifer’s late father, Hilliard’s, estate.
Next was an accountant who said in a 2016 tax return, Fotis noted in company documents a loan from Hilliard for $2million.
The next year, the accountant claims Fotis asked him to move it from accounts payable to equity. When he refused, Fotis, he alleged, had someone else do it.
Police claim to have surveillance camera footage of Dulos and a woman who looks like Troconis dumping trash bags at various locations on the night Jennifer vanished.
Jennifer Dulos vanished from this house in New Canaan, Connecticut, on May 24
They said that when tested, some of those bags contained DNA evidence linked to Jennifer.
Police also interviewed an employee of Dulos’ who said that he took his car on the day his ex-wife vanished then switched out the backseats.
The man claimed he kept the backseats and, when tested, police said they found traces of Jennifer’s blood on them.
On Tuesday, Fotis was accompanied to court by his sister, Rena. She told a Fox reporter outside that it was ‘impossible’ he could have hurt her.
‘He is the nicest person I know. He is a very, very good person,’ she added.
Source: Daily Mail