Saints, Pelicans owner asks judge to dismiss heirs’ lawsuit
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson is asking a judge to dismiss a lawsuit filed by recently estranged heirs who are seeking control of his NFL and NBA teams.
Benson, whose lawyers filed an answer to the lawsuit in civil district court in New Orleans on Tuesday, says he made a “deliberate, reasoned and difficult decision” to change his succession plan so that Gayle Benson, his wife of 10 years, inherits control of the teams.
Benson’s daughter, Renee Benson, and her children, Rita and Ryan LeBlanc, have recently been removed from the 87-year-old owner’s succession plan for his clubs. They sued last week, claiming Benson’s physical and mental health are failing, allowing him to be manipulated by his wife and her allies within the teams’ top management.