Prosecutors said that although the defendants knew the material was stolen, they lied to auction houses and buyers about the manuscripts’ provenance.
An indictment filed in Manhattan state court alleges Glenn Horowitz, Craig Inciardi and Edward Kosinski of conspiring to possess Don Henley’s notes and lyrics for songs that included “Life in the Fast Lane” and “New Kid In Town.” totaling more than $1 million.
The men pleaded not guilty to the charges through their attorneys. They were released without bail.
“The prosecutor’s office alleges crime where none exists and unfairly tarnishes the reputations of respected professionals,” the attorneys said in a statement. “We will vigorously fight these unjustified allegations. These men are innocent.”
In a statement, the Eagles thanked prosecutors for bringing a case that “uncovers the truth about the sale of music memorabilia of highly personal, stolen items hidden behind a facade of legitimacy.”
It called the items “an integral part of the legacy Don Henley created over the course of his 50+ year career” that must be returned “for him and his family to enjoy and preserve for posterity.”
According to court documents, an author hired to write a biography of the band originally stole the manuscripts in the late 1970s. The papers describe email correspondence between the defendants and a person who claims he found the footage in a dressing room backstage at an Eagles concert decades ago.
“That was about 35 years ago and my memory is foggy!” the person wrote.
Prosecutors say the defendants tried between 2012 and 2017 to get Henley to buy back the stolen manuscripts while also attempting to sell them to other potential buyers through the Christie’s and Sotheby’s auction houses.
At one point, Horowitz tried to claim that the source of the ownership was another founding member of the Eagles, Glenn Frey, after Frey’s death in 2016, prosecutors said. In an email, he wrote that Frey “is sadly dead and identifying him as a source would put this to rest once and for all,” they claimed.
Authorities armed with search warrants eventually seized the materials from Sotheby’s and Kosinski’s New Jersey home.
The eponymous album Hotel California and its chart-topping title track both earned Grammy Awards. The album has sold more than 26 million copies since its release in 1976, making it one of the best-selling albums in history.
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https://6abc.com/hotel-california-eagles-stolen-lyrics-3-people-charged/12047558/ 3 men charged with attempting to sell stolen “Hotel California” notes by the Eagles