This Nassau County Supreme Court matter arises out of an alleged scheme to defraud the plaintiff, a real estate developer and an investor in the underlying mining project. The plaintiff’s Complaint sued 19 defendants and alleged 20 causes of action. In addition to fraud, the plaintiff’s claims included conversion of quarry and mining equipment, breach of fiduciary duty, and legal malpractice.
Monaco Cooper Lamme & Carr, PLLC, through our attorneys, Mackenzie Monaco and Jon Hansen, represent one of the defendants, an agriculture, construction and aggregate equipment sales and distribution company that has been in business for over 70 years.
In April 2014, co-defendants purchased a 151-acre quarry with the intention of mining it. In November 2014, the plaintiff was approached by these co-defendants to discuss his interest in joining the project. The plaintiff provided a $365,000 loan, which was later converted into an investment in the quarry.
In March 2015, the co-defendants discussed further investment opportunities with the plaintiff. They came to a verbal agreement whereby plaintiff would invest $5,000,000 in exchange for 50% ownership of one of the co-defendant companies. This verbal agreement was never reduced to writing.
On two occasions, the co-defendant LLC entered into Purchase Agreements with our client for the sale of various pieces of mining equipment. In June 2015, the plaintiff made two payments to our client for the purchase and delivery of mining equipment totaling over $2,000,000.
Thereafter, a dispute arose between the plaintiff and the co-defendants regarding the nature and scope of the mining project. The plaintiff withdrew his financial investment in the quarry. He then contacted our client and requested that the titles to the mining equipment be changed to him individually as opposed to the LLC. Our client denied that request as the Purchase & Sales Agreement was with the LLC and not the plaintiff.
After several years of litigation, we made a motion for summary judgment on behalf of our client. On motion, attorney Jon Hansen argued a complete lack of evidence that any conversion, fraud, scheme, or conspiracy existed, as alleged by the plaintiff.
Judge Prager agreed, finding that the plaintiff had no right of legal ownership of the mining equipment, as he never officially became a member of the company that had title to the equipment.
Judge Prager also dismissed the plaintiff’s claims against the co-defendants, holding that there was no evidence of a scheme to defraud the plaintiff.
Judge Prager signed a Decision and Order dismissing the plaintiff’s case in its entirety on March 31, 2023.
About Jonathan E. Hansen
Jon Hansen litigates personal and premises liability, construction and labor law, hospitality and retail liability, insurance defense, professional liability, and trucking and transportation law for the Firm’s individual, business, and professional clients. He is a named SuperLawyers in the areas of general litigation, personal injury, and appellate law. Jon can be reached at (518) 675-7746 and at email@example.com
About Mackenzie C. Monaco
Mackenzie Monaco maintains an active litigation practice representing a wide range of clients, from individuals and local businesses to national corporations, in state and federal courts throughout New York. Mackenzie delivers counseling, risk management, and tort defense services to the hospitality and retail, construction, insurance, and health care industries. She also maintains an active trusts and estates practice. She is Vice-Chair of ALFA’s Hospitality & Retail Practice Group, has been named to Best Lawyers in America, SuperLawyers, and maintains a 10.0 Superb attorney rating with AVVO. Mackenzie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and (518) 675-7739.
About Monaco Cooper Lamme & Carr, PLLC
MCLC is a law firm dedicated to providing exceptional legal services and unparalleled value while building rewarding and lasting relationships with our clients. Our team includes seasoned trial and transactional attorneys who are nationally recognized industry and legal authorities in a wide range of practices and are supported by a remarkable professional support staff. For more information on our firm, visit mclclaw.com or contact our Marketing Director, Stacy A. Smith at email@example.com.