Facebook Inc (FB) Suit Claims 50% Ownership, Could be Dismissed

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Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) doesn’t partially belong to a New York man, according to a federal judge, who has recommended that his case against the social media giant be dismissed. Paul Ceglia was arrested back in October on charges of falsifying records and destroying evidence in connection with his case against Facebook and its founder Mark Zuckerberg. Today The Wall Street Journal reports that Magistrate Judge Leslie Foschio agreed that the contract on which the case was based had been falsified.

Facebook Inc (FB) Suit Claims 50% Ownership, Could be Dismissed

Ceglia filed suit against Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) and Zuckerberg in 2010 after saying that he had signed a contract with Zuckerberg that gave him half ownership of Facebook in return for $1,000 in money to start up the company. Zuckerberg met Ceglia after responding to a help-wanted ad posted on Craigslist, and he said that he had not yet come up with the idea for Facebook when he met Ceglia.

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The judge said while the two did actually sign a contract, the references to Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) were added later. Apparently a copy of the original contract from 2004 was found on a hard drive during the course of the lawsuit. Ceglia claims that Zuckerberg planted the copy on his hard drive.

The judge’s lengthy 150+ page report will be sent to a district judge, who will then take into consideration objections raised by either party before either accepting or changing the recommended decision from the federal judge. Both sides of the suit have two weeks to file any objections they may have to the recommendation for dismissal.

Ceglia has entered a plea of not guilty in the criminal case against him. He could be in prison for up to 40 years if he is found guilty.