Famous bankrupts

Eva Longoria Being Sued Over Bankrupt Restaurant

The actress may owe millions to an investor in the broke restaurant

It was recently announced the Eva Longoria’s restaurant, Beso, was filing for bankruptcy in Las Vegas. The restaurant consisted of Beso and Eve nightclub.

Longoria owned about 30% in the company, and as a result, she and other parties involved had to pay millions because of unsecured debt. There were nearly $5.7 million in debts as opposed to only about $2 million in assets.

Now, it seems that Longoria is also being sued over the bankruptcy. Mali Nachum is suing her for $4 million because he says that Longoria violated California law in order to try to make herself a bigger product from the restaurant.

Nachum claims that the actress paid the company behind the restaurant $1 million initially so that she could receive exponential gains over the next few years. He also believes that this deal would cut into his percentage of the company.

Toni Braxton -- Bankrupt Again, May Owe $50 Mil

Toni Braxton has filed for bankruptcy again -- claiming she owes somewhere between $10 million and $50 million in unpaid debts all over the country ... including DMVs in TWO different states.

Braxton -- who sold more than 40 million albums in her career -- just filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in California ... and in the docs, the singer claims she's only worth somewhere between $1 mil and $10 mil ... but she could have up to $50 mil in debts.

In the docs, 43-year-old Braxton lists a ton of creditors to whom she thinks she may owe money... including:

-- AT&T
-- The Four Seasons Hotels
-- Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
-- Various medical bills
-- DirecTV
-- Neiman Marcus
-- The William Morris Agency
-- Tiffany & Co.
-- Orkin Pest Control
-- The Internal Revenue Service

-- BMW Financial Services
-- ADT Security
-- American Express
-- Flamingo Las Vegas
-- Mesa Air Conditioning
-- Nevada Power Company
-- Screen Actors Guild
-- The Westin
-- Wells Fargo Bank

Braxton also claims she may owe money to the City of L.A. Parking Violations Bureau -- and the DMV in both California and Nevada.

Braxton has a storied history of financial problems -- she filed for bankruptcy back in 1998 ... and earlier this year, the IRS filed a lien against her for $396k.

Sarah Ferguson faces bankruptcy after running up debts of millions

Queen said to be concerned Duchess of York could become first royal to be declared legally bankrupt in court.

The Duchess of York is doing "everything she can" to avoid bankruptcy as she struggles to manage debts running into millions of pounds, it was revealed today.

Sarah Ferguson has paid off all her personal debts, her spokesman said, and her business debts – some of which are disputed – were "being managed", although voluntary bankruptcy was still an option.

Ferguson's money woes became public after a newspaper claimed her personal and business debts had risen to almost £5m, prompting fears in the royal family that bankruptcy was now her best option.

However, her spokesman said the figure was exaggerated. Sources said later that the Duchess owed around £2m. Ferguson's spokesman said she was reluctant to declare herself bankrupt. "There is a number of options open to the duchess, of which bankruptcy is one. But it would be premature to say she is going into bankruptcy as the situation is being managed," she said.

The Queen was "deeply concerned" about Ferguson's debts, according to the Sunday Telegraph, and had discussed them with David Cameron recently at one of his weekly audiences. The newspaper said Prince Andrew, Ferguson's ex-husband, was masterminding a "rescue plan" to avoid the embarrassment of filing for bankruptcy. No senior member of the royal family has been declared bankrupt.

Ferguson went public with her financial problems in May, after being caught in a cash-for-access scandal.

She was filmed accepting money from a News Of The World reporter posing as a business tycoon, in exchange for an introduction to Andrew. In an interview later with US chat show queen Oprah Winfrey, the ex-royal admitted she was "substantially" in debt and was considering filing for bankruptcy.

She declined to say exactly how much she owed, nor would she confirm that she received only £15,000 a year from her divorce settlement. The Sunday Telegraph said that more than half of Ferguson's debts related to money owed in the US, primarily for lawyers' fees.

Since divorcing in 1996, Ferguson has written children's books, made television documentaries and acted as a spokeswoman for Weight Watchers in America. Hartmoor, the US company that dealt with her media, publishing and licensing work, folded last year with debts of £650,000.

One debt expert said today that Ferguson would benefit from bankruptcy, even if it proved an embarrassing experience.

Richard Sorksy, a senior counsellor with the UK Insolvency Helpline, said: "It's a simple civil court procedure costing around £500 which will enable her to walk away from every single penny of her debt. If your assets are of a lesser value than your debts and if your income is not great enough to meet your expenses, it's generally a good option."

However, he added: "In Sarah Ferguson's case, it's a matter of the higher you climb, the harder you fall; it could be publicly humiliating if every dirty detail of her debt were to be made available in the high court."

Abraham Lincoln

His face may now appear on the penny, but at one time, Lincoln didn't have a single cent to spare. Lincoln tried many occupations as a young man, including buying a general store in New Salem, Illinois, in 1832.

While he may have been terrific at splitting rails, winning debates, and wearing stovepipe hats, Honest Abe wasn't much of a shopkeeper. Lincoln and his partner started buying out other stores' inventories on credit, but their own sales were dismal. Mental Floss: How ex-presidents make ends meet

As the store's debts mounted, Lincoln sold his share, but when his partner died, the future President became liable for $1,000 in back payments. Lincoln didn't have modern bankruptcy laws to protect him, so when his creditors took him to court, he lost his two remaining assets: a horse and some surveying gear. That wasn't enough to foot his bill, though, and Lincoln continued paying off his debts until well into the 1840s.

Donald Trump Beats Carl Icahn in Battle for Casinos

April 13 (Bloomberg) -- Donald J. Trump and his partners won control of the bankrupt casino company Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc., when a judge ruled that their bid was better for creditors than a competing offer by investor Carl Icahn.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Judith H. Wizmur yesterday sided with a group of bondholders who are owed $1.2 billion. Their proposal would reduce Trump Entertainment’s debt by $1.4 billion and give the celebrity billionaire as much as 10 percent of the three- casino company he once ran.

“This is a great victory for Trump and for the bondholders and we’re very happy about it,” Donald Trump said yesterday in a phone interview. “It’s a great loss for Carl Icahn. I was surprised he attempted what he attempted but that’s OK. It’s fine.”

The ruling ends a 14-month battle for control of Trump Entertainment, which pitted billionaires Icahn and Trump against each other in a court in Camden, New Jersey, and paves the way for Trump Entertainment’s three Atlantic City casinos to exit bankruptcy a third time. Icahn didn’t respond to phone requests seeking comment.

Jennifer Lopez`s ex Ojani Noa plans to file for bankruptcy

Jennifer Lopez's ex-husband is planning to file for bankruptcy.

Ojani Noa - who has been involved in a long-running legal battle with the singer - claims he is depressed and broke. He now wants to star in a reality show.

Lopez filed a $10m lawsuit against the former waiter last November [2009] in a bid to stop him selling home videos of the couple, including clips of their 1997 honeymoon.

He told the New York Post: 'The lawsuit put me through so much pain and frustration. I'm losing everything.'

Noa was originally planning to use the clips in a movie about his life. But he says that film is now in jeopardy. He told the paper: '[People] are now afraid to invest in the project because of what's happened.'

Cuban-born Noa, 35, was ordered by a judge in 2007 to pay Lopez $545,000 after he tried to publish a book about his relationship with the actress. He is now planning to star in reality TV show 'I Owe J.Lo' to help him pay back the star.


Baseball’s Texas Rangers Said to Face Bankruptcy

Creditors led by Monarch Alternative Capital may block Hicks Sports Group LLC, which defaulted on $525 million of debt last year, from selling the Rangers and try to put the team into bankruptcy, said the people, who declined to be identified because the debt talks are private. The creditor group, which includes CIT Group Inc. and Galatioto Sports Partners LLC, is seeking at least $30 million more from the team’s sale, one of the people said.


Jewish Times parent seeks bankruptcy protection

The publisher of the Baltimore Jewish Times, to which we have often referred on this blog, is filing for bankruptcy protection Wednesday afternoon after stumbling financially when it lost a major lawsuit to a printing company, Baltimore Sun colleague Gus Setementes reports.

Gus writes that Baltimore-based Alter Communications Inc., which also publishes Style and Chesapeake Life magazines and other publications, plans to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. District Court of Maryland in Baltimore:

The bankruptcy filing will not affect the company's day-to-day operations for employees, readers and advertisers, the company said. The Jewish Times and the other publications will continue to be published, the company said in a statement.
"Here's the headline: we're not going anywhere," said Andrew Alter Buerger, president, publisher and chief executive of Alter Communications said. "Our family and our company have been deep in the fabric of this community for five generations, and we are committed to continuing that relationship."

For less than a dollar per week, the Jewish Times has been a fixture for news coverage of the Jewish community in the Baltimore area for years. Maryland residents receive the weekly paper, which averages 120 pages, for an annual subscription of $46.59. The paper is distributed to a readership of more than 50,000, according to its Web site.


Report: Dykstra fails to get bankruptcy case dismissed

Former outfielder Lenny Dykstra struck out in his recent bid to have his bankruptcy case dismissed, according to a lawyer involved in the case, The Wall Street Journal's Bankruptcy Beat blog reported Wednesday.

Judge Geraldine Mund of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Los Angeles rejected Dykstra's bid for voluntary dismissal of his case following a hearing Tuesday, according to Robert Huttenhoff, an attorney for bankruptcy trustee Arturo Cisneros.

Dykstra, known as "Nails" in his playing days for the New York Mets and the Philadelphia Phillies, has had a bad year. He's lost his wife, his home, his Gulfstream jet.

He even lost control of his bankruptcy case when Mund ruled he could no longer administer his own finances. Cisneros was appointed to steer the proceedings back on course and generate cash for creditors by selling off Dykstra's personal belongings and real estate piece by piece.

Dykstra, who's representing himself in his bankruptcy case, had sought to convince Mund that getting out of bankruptcy was "without a doubt" in the best interests of his creditors, who have filed more than $43 million in claims against the former big leaguer.

The trouble with bankruptcy court, according to Dykstra, is it impinges on his "natural tendency" to succeed against all odds. He's a "singularly motivated kind of individual," and that, Dykstra says, is how he made millions on the ball field, in the car wash business and on Wall Street.

But in bankruptcy court, Dykstra said, his will to succeed -- "a natural tendency" that he's "unable to suppress" -- is a hindrance, not a benefit. Worse, Dykstra said, Cisneros "does not share his unique perspective" and continues to sell off his assets.

Dykstra is due back in bankruptcy court next week for a hearing on his ongoing fight with insurer Fireman Fund over a canceled policy and property damage at his California mansion.



Ex-Piston lists $4.7M of debt in bankruptcy

Detroit --Businessman and former Detroit Piston Derrick Coleman lists debts of $4.7 million and assets of just over $1 million in newly filed bankruptcy records.

Coleman, whose 15-year NBA career ended with the Pistons in 2005, had interests in a wide range of real estate, retail and restaurant companies. His interests included a stake in Detroit's Sweet Georgia Brown restaurant, which closed in February, and franchises in Hungry Howie's pizza and Tim Hortons doughnuts.

Coleman filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy March 2. He lists a $50,000 debt to Detroit Mayor Dave Bing -- also a former Pistons great -- among his unsecured, non-priority debts.

In a filing Wednesday, in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Detroit, Coleman lists assets including a 1997 Bentley convertible worth $50,000; two chinchilla and three mink fur coats worth a total of $15,000; and $3,000 worth of jewelry.

Major secured creditors include TMST Home Loans Inc., owed just over $1 million, and JP Morgan Chase, owed about $400,000.

Coleman said in a court filing he plans to keep his home in Beverly Hills, worth about $168,000, and surrender a Woodward Avenue condo and property in Highland Township. He also wants to keep his mother's Beverly Hills home, with an estimated value of about $191,000.

The Detroit News reported in January that Coleman had defaulted on the mortgage for his New Center condominium. Earlier, the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. sued Coleman alleging he defaulted on a $200,000 loan for a retail development called Coleman Corners.


Bovas, two restaurants hit bankruptcy court

Restaurant owner Anthony Bova filed for bankruptcy Thursday for himself, wife Laurie Bova, and two of his restaurants in Boca Raton – Bova Cucina and Bova Ristorante.

Bova was a business partner of Ponzi schemer and disgraced attorney Scott Rothstein. The two restaurants declared a combined debt of $12.3 million.

The Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings show that Scott Rothstein had a 50 percent ownership stake in Bova Cucina and Bova Ristorante.

They also show that two officials with Rothstein’s former law firm, Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler, were listed as officers of Bova Ristorante: David Boden, former general counsel of the law firm is listed as vice president of the restaurant, and Debra Villegas, former chief operating officer at the law firm, is listed as treasurer.

Bova Cucina, on Military Trail, was open until recently, and no one answered the phone Thursday evening. Bova Ristorante, on Federal Highway, closed in the fall, just before Rothstein’s Ponzi scheme came to light over Halloween weekend. A third related restaurant, Bova Prime, was still operating Thursday.

The U.S. Department of Justice has secured a federal protective order over all businesses where Rothstein held an interest, including Bova Cucina and Bova Ristorante. Certain claims in both bankruptcies show assistant U.S. Attorney Alison Lehr as the contact.
On March 18, HSBC Bank USA filed a foreclosure lawsuit on the Boca Raton home of Anthony and Laurie Bova, at 3320 St. Charles Circle, in the Woodfield Hunt Club subdivision.

According to the bankruptcy petitions, Bova declared $8.73 million in debt and $2.1 million in assets; Bova Ristorante declared $4.86 million in debt and only $69,525 in assets; Bova Cucina declared $7.4 million in debt and $165,912 in assets.

Bova, already a successful restaurant owner in 2008, surprised many people by going into business with Rothstein in July 2008, announcing plans for new restaurants. At one point, there were plans for a Bova Smoke cigar bar and lounge in the former site of Jackson's Steakhouse on Las Olas Boulevard, within blocks of the Bova Prime in the Bank of America Building that housed Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler.

Rothstein is in prison, awaiting sentencing in May. He pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering, racketeering, wire fraud and mail fraud in connection with running a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme, using his law firm as a front.

In the Bova Cucina bankruptcy, RRA is listed with a claim of $807,523, while Rothstein has a claim in the exact same amount, in care of Lehr.
Other claims in the Bova Cucina bankruptcy include Bova himself, with a loan of $530,000; the Greenspoon Marder law firm, $110,000; Miami Bar & Restaurant Supplies, $30,000; National City Bank, $45,000; PNC Bank, $45,000; RBC Bank, $39,544; Small Business Administration Loan, $40,000; Sun-Sentinel, $22,000.

The Bova Cucina bankruptcy shows the past five years of sales for the restaurant dropping off steadily, from $5.1 million in 2006 to $3.2 million in 2009, and $610,247 for 2010 year-to-date.