A Chester County judge has cleared the way for the destruction of 1,352 bottles of collector-grade wine that had been seized from a Malvern man after he was accused of selling wine over the Internet.
The bottles have been at the core of a legal tug-of-war that dates back to January 2014, when the home of Arthur Goldman and Melissa Kurtzman was raided. State police carted off 2,447 bottles, storing them in a nonclimate-controlled warehouse in Southwest Philadelphia.
After Goldman's criminal case was resolved - he did not enter a plea and was admitted into a two-year Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program - the couple sued for the return of the wine. Negotiations allowed the couple to take back 1,447 bottles.
The remainder - 1,352 bottles, as some had been opened for testing - was scheduled for destruction under state law. But an attorney for Chester County Hospital appealed to Chester County Court to assume custody of the wine and sell it as a fundraiser.
In an order signed Sept. 15, Chester County Court Judge Edward Griffith ruled that the state liquor code makes no provision for "condemned" wine to be sold for any purpose and denied the hospital's petition.
It is not clear when or how the destruction would occur.