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Appeals court upholds rejection of blood contract

Appeals court upholds rejection of blood contract

The contract promising to reimburse a friend for a bad investment was written in blood _ but that was not good enough for a California appeals court.
The Fourth District Court of Appeal in Santa Ana agreed with a lower court Monday when it ruled that the blood contract between two Korean businessmen was unenforceable and gratuitous.
According to court papers, Jinsoo Kim sued his friend Stephen Son in 2006 to collect on the contract, in which Son promised to repay Kim roughly $170,000 for money Kim lost investing in Son's companies.
At the time, Son was the majority shareholder and operator of a South Korean company called MJ Inc. and was the sole owner of a California corporation called Netouch International Inc.
Vladimir Khiterer, Son's attorney, said Kim invested in both companies and lost all his money when they failed. The companies were involved in the manufacture and sale of boutique children's clothing, the attorney said.
In October 2004, the two men were out drinking at a Garden Grove sushi restaurant and karaoke bar when Son asked the waiter for a safety pin, pricked his finger and wrote the contract in blood in Korean characters.
The note, translated and quoted in the appellate court decision, read: "Sir, please forgive me. Because of my deeds you have suffered financially. I will repay you to the best of my ability."
Son later added similar promises to the note in ink, according to court papers.
Kim filed a civil lawsuit more than a year later in Orange County Superior Court alleging that Son had committed fraud by defaulting on the note.
Kim's attorney, Richard Radcliffe, did not immediately return a call for comment Tuesday.
Khiterer said Kim was in South Korea when he wired the money to corporate bank accounts _ not to Son's personal account _ and the money was never guaranteed by Son, who lives in La Habra, the attorney said.
He also alleged that Kim pressured Son to write the blood contract while he was intoxicated.
"It just proves one more time that you cannot just file a frivolous lawsuit, no matter how fantastic it may sound," Khiterer said. "We have laws and every contract has to be supported."
Kim immigrated to the U.S. around the time the contract was written and lives in Irvine, Khiterer said.


Updated : 2020-12-06 07:40 GMT+08:00