A jury in the U.S. Virgin Islands has awarded Miami Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor and two partners the return of a $1.5 million deposit from the botched sale of a private island.
The NFL star, who recently signed a $1.5 million, one-year contract to come back to the Dolphins, will be given his share of the deposit, plus expenses, after a jury determined that the seller breached a 2004 contract for the 158-acre island.
After five years of litigation, Taylor's attorney, Charles C. Papy, said Thursday he was "elated" by the jury's findings, which resolved the civil case.
Taylor could not be reached Thursday.
The lingering dispute arose from a 2004 contract Taylor and two partners signed to buy a largely undeveloped island known as Great St. James, off St. Thomas' east end. On Tuesday, the jury determined that the seller, Christian Kjaer, broke the contract because he could not comply with various requirements for closing.
According to a 2004 complaint by Taylor and partners Robert Addie and Jorge Perez, the seller deposited the trio's $1.5 million deposit into an escrow account and failed to return it when he could not deliver a marketable title.
Taylor, 34, played his first 11 NFL seasons with Miami before being traded a year ago to the Washington Redskins. He was released by Washington in March after an injury-plagued season.
The popular player wanted to return to South Florida, where he still lives, and worked out a new deal with Miami. He will make $1.1 million in base salary and $400,000 in incentives next season.