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Jamie McCourt testifies she did not understand disputed agreement on Dodgers ownership

September 20, 2010 |  6:52 pm

Jamie McCourt stuck to her story all afternoon Monday. Under cross-examination, she repeated that she believed the disputed agreement she and her estranged husband signed in 2004 permitted Frank McCourt to present himself as the sole owner of the Dodgers but did not mean the baseball team would be his in the event of divorce.

“That is as fictional as Harry Potter,” said Steve Susman, one of Frank McCourt's attorneys, outside court.

Under fierce questioning, Jamie did not back down from her assertions that she neither read nor understood the agreement and that no one had properly explained it to her.

Susman, who emphasized that Jame once practiced law, walked her through the agreement and the cover letter that accompanied it, with Jamie deflecting numerous questions by saying she did not understand the language or could not recall discussing it.

At one point, Susman read a statement from the cover letter, sent by the attorney who drafted the agreement, Larry Silverstein.

“As we have discussed, California is a community property state,” Silverstein wrote.

Asked Susman: “Did he have that discussion with you, or is he just hallucinating?”

Replied Jamie: “I can’t speak for him, or if he was hallucinating.”

Susman spent several hours questioning Jamie. When her lawyer, David Boies, returned to his questioning, Boies asked whether Silverstein and his firm had spent as much time explaining the agreement to her as Susman had spent reviewing it with her on the witness stand.

“No,” she said.

Jamie also shed more light into the dynamics of the McCourt marriage by discussing a handwritten note from March 31, 2004, the day the agreement was signed. It turns out Jamie had an acronym for her husband’s apparent frequent yelling.

The McCourts flew from Massachusetts to California that day, and Jamie wrote in her note that “Frank freaked out because we had to land in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for no apparent reason. That means YAM.”

And what did YAM mean?

“That means he is yelling at me,” she said.

-- Bill Shaikin at Los Angeles County Superior Court

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