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Money Wanted Back In Phony Deal. 2005-12-20
A federal lawsuit was made by a Louisiana man because an Allegheny County couple breached the contract made. The contract was made for potential development of an American Indian casino in Fayette County. Kermith R. Sonnier Sr., of Lake Charles, hope to seek re-compensation.
He hopes to seek to recoup the $335,000 in the claim. Sonnier is demanding this amount because he claims he paid Ernest and Marilyn Liggett in 2003 and 2004 that amount. According to the lawsuit, this was the only reason he was seeking this amount back. Sonnier filed this lawsuit this month in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh.
The Liggetts story is that they began buying parcels in Brownsville in the early 1990s, and have had some issues with the properties. They own more than 100 borough properties, and have been cited from time to time for ordinance violations. The violations got worse as the couple failed to repair.
In 1994, the Liggetts planed to develop a strip mall around the downtown area. This being a business district, they hoped to introduce a theme restaurant, a marina and a floating walkway. Seven years later, they were in some sort of financial troubles.
They had many with taxes on delinquent properties; they were planning on selling off, because they couldn’t take care of them. Ernest Liggett found that a Native American tribe was interested in establishing a reservation and casino in the borough, so this was the opportunity to make a sale.
In July 2003, Sonnier made an agreement with the Liggetts, and they did this through a third party, through Ohwista Ko:Wah Holdings. By September 2004, the Liggetts and Sonnier had come to another agreement to create a foundation for charity. They were hopping to create the Sonnier Foundation, in remembrance of Sonnier's son. The fund would be for a son, who was killed in 2004, by police gunfire.
Obviously none of these things went as planned, as there wouldn’t be a lawsuit if that were true. Sonnier is demanding in return for a $325,000 investment he was to receive a 2.25% share in the project, but he is not asking for that. Instead he is asking for another $10,000 he gave to the Liggetts after the second contract.
Sonnier claims the Liggetts failed to refund any money, transfer any property, transfer the casino to him, or create a charity. Liggetts company Platinum Settlement Services is the defendant in this case. For all these allegations in the suit, the Liggets had nothing to say, because they couldn’t be reached for comment.
(By Andrea)