Fears Nachawati’s $166M Verdict Ranked As Largest Intentional Tort Award for 2018
FORT WORTH, Texas – The $166 million jury verdict secured by Fears Nachawati for the son of a North Texas woman killed for the proceeds of her life insurance policies has been recognized by The National Law Journal as 2018’s largest intentional tort award in Texas.
The May 2018 jury verdict in Tarrant County’s 141st Judicial District Court was also ranked the sixth largest among all verdicts in Texas and the 14th largest nationally for the year. Rankings are based upon national court records compiled by the NLJ’s research affiliate, VerdictSearch, coupled with its own research of online news sources and databases.
Jurors determined Mark and Virginia Buckland were central figures in a conspiracy that led to the stabbing death of Virginia’s mother, Anita Fox, which was allegedly carried out by two members of a nomadic ethnic clan known as Irish Travellers.
“It is an honor to receive such recognition for your work, but our main concern from the start was to make sure the Bucklands would not profit from their actions. With this verdict there is no possible way they will ever be able to get a dime from the estate,” said Fears Nachawati partner Matthew McCarley, who represented Al Fox III, Ms. Fox’s son and executor of her estate.
“The knowledge that this was the largest intentional tort in the state, and one of the largest verdicts in the country last year, simply puts an exclamation point on the jury’s findings.”
Though the Bucklands have never been charged criminally in the murder, the jury found that they had crafted a scheme in which they would be the sole beneficiaries of a series of life insurance policies, in part without the knowledge of the 69-year-old Ms. Fox.
Following the recommendation of an insurance agent, the two allowed Pat Gorman to become a third-party investor in the policies. Looking for immediate returns on his investment, Mr. Gorman and his son allegedly stalked and murdered Ms. Fox inside a Colleyville, Texas, house where she worked as a housekeeper.
Earlier this year, Mr. McCarley was featured on the episode “Gypsy Grandma” of the Oxygen Network’s true crime show “In Ice Cold Blood” which detailed the case.
The case is Al Fox III, Individually and as Personal Representative of the Estate of Anita Fox v. Mark and Virginia Buckland, Cause No. 348-277914-15. Also representing Mr. Fox at trial was Fears Nachawati lawyer Brice Burris.
Dallas-based Fears Nachawati Law Firm represents states, counties, cities, private entities and individuals in high-impact litigation involving environmental matters, drug and medical device liability, and consumer and business fraud matters.