Tom’s and Greg’s Firearms
Tom owns a gun store in Downey; it is very specialized and carries only American made firearms. The business was Tom’s father’s before he died, when Tom took it over. Tom’s good friend Greg has worked for him for more than 12 years, and 3 years ago they changed the name from “Tom’s Firearms” to “Tom’s & Greg’s Firearms” even though Greg was not an owner.
Tom, as the owner, worked only part time at the store, and put a lot of trust in Greg, who ran the day to day business. Greg did all of the books, ordered the inventory, signed company checks, and was there every day to see the customers. Recently Tom and Greg had been discussing how Greg could become a partner in the business. The store had inventory worth more than $275,000, and Tom wanted Greg to “buy-in” to the business by paying him $100,000 for a 1/3 share, but Greg did not have anything close to that amount.
When Greg went on a two-week vacation Tom worked every day at the store. Tom had not looked at the banking records for several months, and decided to go through the recent bank statements. Tom saw to his horror that Greg had been writing bad checks on the account to their suppliers; the bank was threatening to close the checking account and some suppliers had started to ship parts on a “COD” (cash on delivery) basis.
Tom decided to hire an investigator to see what was going on. The investigator discovered that Greg had been taking cash out of the register during his shifts and had started a competing business selling guns at local gun shows. The investigator also observed Greg taking inventory from the store and selling it at the gun shows.
Please answer the following three (3) questions:
(1) Can Tom sue Greg in tort for his actions? If so, what torts do you think he committed? Explain why you think Greg committed the torts.
(2) Can Greg be criminally prosecuted for his actions? If so, what crimes do you think he committed? Explain why you think Greg committed the crimes.
(3) Explain the differences in the procedures that take place in (a) a civil lawsuit filed by Tom against Greg to recover damages for Greg’s conduct, and (b) a criminal prosecution of Greg for the same conduc