* Emigrant says Edelman used loan to buy Giacometti work
* Edelman says loan will be paid back
* Defendant was model for film character Gordon Gekko
(Adds Edelman comments, byline)
By Jonathan Stempel
NEW YORK, March 10 (Reuters) - Asher Edelman, a former corporate raider who became an art dealer, has been sued by Emigrant Bank for more than $3.1 million after allegedly defaulting on some loans, including one to buy a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti.
Edelman said in an interview that he plans to repay amounts owed “very shortly.”
The case is an unusual twist for the 70-year-old Edelman, who had been a leading figure in the leveraged buyout boom of the 1980s, before turning his focus to the art world.
Edelman was among the people used to model the character Gordon Gekko in Oliver Stone’s film “Wall Street,” people involved in making the 1987 film said at the time. Michael Douglas won an Oscar for best actor for portraying Gekko.
According to papers filed Tuesday with the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, Emigrant had tolerated Edelman’s “long history of late payments, missed payments, other defaults and collateral sales” in a relationship dating to 2006, before finally issuing a default notice on July 1, 2009,
The bank agreed to give Edelman more time to make good on his obligations, but he failed to do so, the papers allege.
Hope Tate, a senior banker for Emigrant Bank Fine Art Finance LLC, said in an affidavit that Edelman obtained two loans and a credit line from Emigrant.
She said the funds included a $2 million loan for his purchase of Giacometti’s “Torse de Femme.”
Edelman now runs Edelman Arts, a gallery specializing in modern art, on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
“Since the year end, the bank and I have been negotiating an extension of a credit that I’ve had for about the last three or four years,” Edelman said in the interview. “We had negotiations up until Monday and it was only yesterday that I learned from them that they wanted full payment of the loan. They will have full payment of the loan very shortly.”
A lawyer for Emigrant was not immediately available for comment.
The case is Emigrant Bank Fine Art Finance LLC v. Edelman et al, New York State Supreme Court, New York County, No. 600607/2010. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel; editing by Andre Grenon)