Berberian is seeking sole control of the family trust that owns the largest share of the franchise, according to a petition filed in San Joaquin County Superior Court.
Following the deaths of their parents in 2018, Spanos and Berberian were named co-trustees of the trust, which owns a 36% stake in the team, according to court documents.
Spanos, Berberian and their two other siblings — team vice president Michael Spanos and Alexis Spanos Ruhl — each individually own 15% of the Chargers. All four siblings are equal beneficiaries of the family trust, according to court documents.
The remaining 4% of the franchise is owned by other parties outside of the Spanos family.
In his lawsuit, Berberian alleges that Dean Spanos and his brother Michael acted against their parents’ wishes “due to their deep-seated misogynistic attitudes and sense of entitlement as family men” in order to “teach him that a woman has no rights.”
She also accuses her brothers of fiduciary mismanagement that left the Spanos family trust with more than $358 million in debt at the end of 2021, according to the lawsuit. Berberian points to an instance where she said finances were manipulated to borrow more than $60 million for “the unnecessary purchase of an airplane for Dean and Michael’s use that has no legitimate business justification,” according to the trial.
Berberian alleges that her brothers “went on a campaign to punish, belittle and humiliate her” in retaliation for speaking out against their handling of the family trust.
His lawsuit claims that Dean and Michael Spanos “deeply believe that regardless of their parents’ intentions and wishes, men are in charge and women should be silent.”
Dean and Michael Spanos and their sister Ruhl released a joint statement on Friday, denouncing Berberian’s actions.
“It is unfortunate that our sister Dea, who clearly has no interest in continuing to participate in family affairs, has resorted to false and provocative accusations in an attempt to impose her will on the rest of the family,” they say. they in the statement.
“The three of us and our children, representing over 75% of the family and its business ownership, are united in supporting the wishes of our parents and grandparents, including for continued ownership and operation. Chargers.”
In a separate statement, Ruhl said his brother Dean had been “unerringly respectful of me and my wishes.”
“To portray Dean as being somehow less respectful of the women in our family just isn’t fair,” Ruhl continued.
Berberian sued last year to try to force the sale of the family trust, including its stake in the Chargers franchise. The NFL stepped in and asked to arbitrate the matter because it was a dispute between NFL owners, a source familiar with the matter told CNN.
Berberian agreed this week to allow the NFL to arbitrate the matter, the source said.
The NFL declined to comment on the situation.