Man sued for $30k over $40 used Craigslist printer

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (WCMH) – A Craigslist sale of a used laser printer has turned into a 6 ½ year legal debacle for a Massachusetts man.

The troubles for 66-year-old Doug Costello have cost him $12,000 in legal fees so far and a potential $30,000 judgement against him.

The Indianapolis Star reports that Costello sold the used printer on Craigslist in 2009.

Unknown to Costello, the buyer was a 54-year-old Indianapolis man known my many in the legal community as a frequent lawsuit filer who represents himself in court, the paper reported. The buyer, Gersh Zavodnik has also been reprimanded by the Indiana Supreme court, calling him a “prolific, abusive litigant.”

Costello’s legal troubles began shortly after shipping the printer. He was sued in small claims court, seeking damages of $6,000.

That case was dismissed due to lack of evidence.

“I figured that’s it, but no, no, no. Now I’m in another twilight zone,” Costello told the paper.

A second lawsuit was filed in another court, with much higher damages requested for breach of contract, fraud, conversion, deceptive advertising and emotional distress.

Over the next two years, the case was dismissed, reinstated and then left stagnant for nearly nine months.

After a number of legal filings went unanswered, Costello found himself on the hook for a $30,000 judgement. Costello told

Costello then hired a lawyer, who was able to get the judgement overturned on appear. Now, after nearly seven years, a panel of judges will hold a hearing to determine if the case should be dismissed for good.

Zavodnik told the New York Daily News that the cause of the stagnant case and the overturned verdicts was an orchestrated attack on him due to his numerous lawsuits.

“There are no safeguards,” Zavodnik told the Daily News. “You go to the court of appeals, they collude and conspire. You go to superior court, they collude and conspire. It’s mafioso!”

As for Costello, he said he’s done selling things online.

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