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Amagansett man sues celebrity chef Bobby Flay

Chef Bobby Flay at his new burger joint,

Chef Bobby Flay at his new burger joint, Bobby's Burger Palace at the Smith Haven Mall. Credit: Newsday File, 2008 / Alejandra Villa

A real estate agent from Amagansett on Friday filed a lawsuit against celebrity chef Bobby Flay, claiming the Food Network star got him fired from his brokers' job last month and he lost several hundred thousand dollars in commissions.

Alexander Peters, 53, who has homes in Amagansett and Manhattan, said he sold a 2.89-acre piece of land in Amagansett to Flay and his wife in August for $1.485 million.

Peters, whose Amagansett home is adjacent to Flay's property, wrote a letter welcoming the television star and his wife to the neighborhood and offered to share the history of the property, which Peters said is "full of colonial and Indian relics."

"Obviously I know you bought this land to build your house, but if you were ever interested in preserving it, I would be happy to work with you and the town and county to do so," Peters, a member of Amagansett-Springs Aquifer Protection, a local environmental group, wrote in the letter. "Regardless, I would truly enjoy showing you all the features of your land, which I guarantee your builder does not know. Bulldozers are somewhat indiscriminate. I'm sure you wouldn't want to disturb Montaukett grave sites, so I'd be happy to show you where they are and share some of the history of your land."

Eliot Bloom, attorney for Peters, said Flay perceived that Peters was meddling in his personal business and complained to Brown Harris Stevens on or about Nov. 4 and demanded that Peters be fired.

Flay's publicist, Jennifer Baum, could not be reached Friday for comment. A spokeswoman for Brown Harris Stevens, Peters' former employer, said the firm severed ties with Peters on Nov. 4 but declined to say why.

In the lawsuit, filed in State Supreme Court in Riverhead, Peters demanded Flay pay him a minimum of $450,000 - the amount that Peters said he was expected to be paid from several multimillion-dollar deals.

Bloom contends that Peters was not representing Brown Harris Stevens at the time he wrote the letter to Flay. However, in that letter, Peters did indicate he was a senior vice president for Brown Harris Stevens.

"A reasonable person would have picked up the phone," Peters said Friday of Flay in an interview.

>> PHOTOS: Click here to see photos of Bobby Flay's place in Lake Grove

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