You’ll read more of this later in the AJC, but the Bartow County Bank has filed notice in Gordon County Superior Court that former state lawmaker Tom Graves, Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers and their company owe $2.25 million for cash loaned to purchase a motel in Calhoun.
Graves is the leading candidate in the 9th District congressional race, headed toward a June 8 runoff with former state senator Lee Hawkins of Gainesville. Both are Republican.
The complaint was filed May 17 against Graves, Rogers and Tich Hospitality.
In the court papers, the bank says Graves guaranteed repayment, even though he was “insolvent in that his liabilities exceeded his assets and he was unable to pay his obligations as they matured.”
The bank also claims Graves initiated a “fraudulent transfer” of property in order to frustrate the bank’s efforts to pursue the debt.
Lori Geary at WSB-TV reported talking to Rogers by phone. (Here’s a link to the video.) The Senate majority leader said he had already severed ties with the company
Said the Graves campaign:
“The litigation involves complicated issues of fact and law. I have filed my own claims against the plaintiff in this lawsuit because I suffered damages as a result of its broken promises to me.
“This country has a judicial system in place where business disputes like this lawsuit can be successfully and fairly resolved, and I am fully confident that a satisfactory resolution will be reached once all the facts have come to light.”
Graves accused the Hawkins campaign of spreading word of the lawsuit: “It is unfortunate that my opponent resorts to trying to tear good men down in order to advance his political career.”
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