The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Pro Sports

May 2, 2014

Attorney: Third party leaked recording of Sterling

LOS ANGELES — An attorney representing the woman Donald Sterling was talking to when he made racist remarks said Thursday that the hour-long conversation was taped by mutual agreement last September and provided to a friend for safekeeping, who then leaked it to TMZ.

V. Stiviano sent two snippets of the conversation, recorded in her Los Angeles duplex, to a friend who released them without her permission, lawyer Siamak Nehoray said. He would not identify the friend.

Nehoray said she sent snippets of the conversation recorded on her phone electronically to her friend for safekeeping in case anything happened, but only two went through, Nehoray said.

He wouldn't elaborate on what prompted her to send the recordings.

Nehoray said Stiviano, 31, only learned they would become public after TMZ contacted her. She was devastated, he said.

"She's a young girl thrown in the middle of this thing, unwillingly," Nehoray said. "She didn't release the tape. She gave it to somebody for safe keeping. It was unfortunate that it was released. It's a lot to deal with."

In the recording, the Los Angeles Clippers owner expresses his unhappiness with Stiviano for posting online photos of herself with black people, including basketball great Magic Johnson.

Attorney Robert Platt, who is general counsel for the Clippers, said he has no comment.

In March, Sterling's wife, Rochelle, sued Stiviano, seeking the return of more than $2.5 million in gifts Stiviano allegedly received from her husband, including luxury cars and a $1.8 million duplex. Stiviano's name is on the duplex's title, Nehoray said.

"We're saying when you give a gift, don't ask for it back. The law is clear you don't have to," Nehoray said. The lawsuit was a "cut and paste" of a "prior lawsuit against a previous girlfriend," he said.

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