Friday, July 16, 2010

Church, four charities sued by AKERMAN SENTERFITT and LYDIA CLADEK, INC.Trustee For Return of $1.645 million in “Fraudulent Transfers”

Alleging fraudulent transfers by insolvent Lydia Cladek, Inc. during the four years preceding the bankruptcy, Michael Phelan, the Bankruptcy Trustee appointed by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Jacksonville, filed five federal court lawsuits yesterday against three St. Johns County non-profit organizations and two non-profit organizations elsewhere. Those sued are the CENTER FOR SPIRITUAL LIVING INC. ST. AUGUSTINE a/k/a CENTER FOR POSITIVE LIVING(the Trustee is seeking some $208,725.00), DIAMONDS IN THE ROUGH FARM, INC.,(seeking some $38,290.00(),GOLIATH AND BE-BE'S WORLD, INC. of Ponte Vedra Beach, (seeking some $1,021,586.67), THE GLOBAL HUNGER PROJECT, INC. a/ka THE HUNGER PROJECT of New York City (seeking some $230,790.00) and PEACEJAM FOUNDATION of Arvada, Colorado (seeking some $146,299.68).

The trustee is represented by the AKERMAN SENTERFITT law firm.

Don’t expect to read about it in the St. Augustine Record a/k/a "WRecKord," a newspaper that invades the privacy of car wreck death victims' families while too often failing to report the real news in our community.

In a motion filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy COurt earlier this month, Michael Phelan, the U.S. Trustee, asked the Court to order a public auction of substantially all of LYDIA CLADEK,INC.'s nonperforming assets. You did not read this in the St. Augustine WRecKord, just as the WREcKord has failed to cover other LCI news. See below.

Trustee Michael Phelan said in all five lawsuits filed yesterday in United States District Court in Jacksonville that the "Ponzi scheme" run by LYDIA CLADEK, INC. bilked investors out of $100 million and perhaps as much as $200 million. CLADEK euchred investors by claiming to make huge profits from selling used cars at 29% interest to people with no credit or bad credit.

Trustee Phelan has also sued MICHAEL LAMOND, who was LYDIA CLADEK's employee and "spirtual consultant," to recover allegedly fraudulently transferred assets.

Phelan is seeking to recover $536,818.97 from MICHAEL LAMOND, described as "an individual residing in Marin, Riverside and/or Santa Cruz Counties, California."

Lamond was served with the lawsuit at "his usual place of abode" at 147 Oak Avenue, Felton, California; at his place of business, 10 Commercial Blvd., Suite 208, Novato, California; and at 221 S. Palencio, Apartment 5S, Palm Springs, California.

Phelan, represented by AKERMAN SENTERFITT, alleges in the lawsuit that LAMOND "knew or should have known that the Debtor's aggressive program of solicitation of new investors, coupled with commissions paid for referrals, the above-market rates
of return, and the 'guaranteed' nature of the purported investments, was indicative of a Ponzi scheme whereby subsequent investments were required to fund monthly returns on prior investments.

This is not the first lawsuit filed by the Trustee and the Justice Department, which has sued for civil forfeiture of real estate that LYDIA CLADEK allegedly bought with stolen money.

Alleging a classic “Ponzi scheme” involving mail fraud and wire fraud by LYDIA CLADEK and LYDIA CLADEK, INC., the United States Justice Department has sued LYDIA CLADEK in an in rem action for civil forfeiture. An in rem action is a case involving property, not suing individuals. Forfeiture of three expensive properties purchased for more than $7 million is sought based upon mail fraud and wire fraud.
The Justice Department is seeking return to the LYDIA CLADCEK Bankruptcy Trustee, Michael Phelan, of three parcels of real estate, including 1061 SW Alaska Way, Greenville (Madison County), Florida (purchase price $269,000 on March 23, 2004); 16250 Captiva Drive (Lee County) Florida(purchase price $3.95 million on June 1, 2006); and 4443 Waters Edge Lane, Sanibel (Lee County), Florida (purchase price $3 million on April 6, 2005). The lawsuit, supported by a sworn declaration by FBI Special Agent Bridgette Trela Frost, shows that investors’ money was used to purchase expensive homes for CLADEK while concealing the true owner.Trustee Michael Phelan, represented by Akerman SEnterfitt, has sued
The lawsuit was filed April 8, 2010 by United States Attorney A. Brian Albritton and Assistant United States Attorney Bonnie A. Glober. It alleges CLADEK funneled more than $12 million in investor funds into her own personal bank accounts. The suit alleges, “These absconded funds
were used to purchase million dollar homes and real estate, to fund
mortgage payments for these homes, to pay renovation and
landscaping costs for several properties in Southwest Florida, and to
purchase multiple luxury vehicles for Cladek's personal use.” The suit further alleges, “Cladek purchased many properties in the names of nominee
corporations including Captiva Island Vacation Properties, LLC and
Land Trust Service Corporation, both of which are named defendants
in this action.”
In addition, the Trustee has filed a lawsuit seeking to “pierce the corporate veil” based on fraud, and to “impose alter ego liability” upon LYDIA CLADEK and her entities for her fraudulent actions. The lawsuit seeks injunctive relief and turnover of property to the Trustee, to void fraudulent transfers of money and property, to provide an accounting and a constructive trust and to remedy CLADEK’s breach of fiduciary duty.
The lawsuit was filed on May 19, 2010. It names Lydia I Cladek, 189 Sea Colony Parkway, St. Augustine, FL 32080; Captiva Island Vacation Properties, LLC, 3201 Fern Valley Road, Suite 212, Louisville, KY 40213; and Land Trust Service Corporation, which CLADEK allegedly used as a front or nominee or strawman.
A preliminary injunction was granted by Chief Bankruptcy Judge Paul M. Glenn on May 25, 2010.
The injunction may be read at
Not one word of these three lawsuits has appeared in the St. Augustine WRecKord, whose owners (MORRIS PUBLISHING) have engaged in disinvestment, starving the WRecKord’s newsroom for funds and staff, and expecting a skeleton staff to cover corrupt Florida’s most corrupt county and our Nation’s Oldest City (where the crooks are bold and the newspaper editors are as soft on white collar crime and corruption as they re on SHERIFF DAVID SHOAR f/k/a “DAVID HOAR).

More than $22,000,000 is owed to the top twenty unsecured creditors (investors) of LYDIA CLADEK, Inc., half of whom are local residents here in Northeast Florida. Source: May 17, 2010 filing by Chapter 11 Trustee Michael Phelan.

Here are the names (home addresses redacted):

Rudolph Danowski, Oxford, Ct., more than $2.068 million
Donald Radbill, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $1.773 million
Edward Cladek, Hinsdale, Illinois, more than $1.720 million
Richard Rakus, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $1.311 million
C.L. Anderson, Jacksonville, Florida more than $1.242 million
Charles Mandeville, Deland, Florida more than $1.185 million
Dennis Markiewicz, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $1.170 million
Sharrell Halverson, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $1.107 million
David Rees, Quincy, Illinois, more than $1.052 million
Terry and Hollice Lichty, Waterloo, Iowa, more than $964,000
Andrea Levinson, St. Augustine Florida, more than $951,000
Benett Yell, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $934,000
Gamache/Koger, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $913,000
Robert Helferrich, Bristol, Wisconsin, more than $902,000
Lorie Zemlo, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $798,000
Gary Alligood, St. Augustine, Florida, more than $725,000
Steve and Brigitte Neiswander, Taylors, South Carolina, more than $707,000
Conrad Hidalgo, Bordentown Township, N.J., more than $703,000\

This information has not been reported by the St. Augustine WRecKord.

What do you reckon?

No comments: