A lawsuit seeking more than $650,000 from a local developer and one of his companies was filed last month by A. L. Thompson Building Supplies Ltd.
The writ concerns a credit application dating back to October 2003 between Empire Development and its owner and director, Lewis Ebanks. The terms of the deal, according to the writ, were that A. L. Thompson’s “would provide building supplies on credit to [Mr. Ebanks].”
When contacted for comment Monday, Mr. Ebanks denied all claims made against him and against Empire Development in the lawsuit. The writ says Mr. Ebanks “defaulted” on the terms of payment by June 2012. The lawsuit alleges that Mr. Ebanks signed a promissory note during the same month which agreed on payment of $100,000 on the debt by July 31, 2012 and an additional payment of $150,000 by Aug. 31, 2012. Additional monthly installments “no less than” $20,000 were due starting in September 2012, according to the writ.
It is alleged that Mr. Ebanks also signed a personal guarantee on July 6, 2012 to guarantee all future and present debts owed to A. L. Thompson’s by Empire Development Company Ltd.
“[Mr. Ebanks] failed to make any payments pursuant to the [promissory] note,” the writ states. “[Empire Development] failed to make payments for goods and services in accordance with the first and second agreements [contracts with A. L. Thompson’s].”
As of the date of the writ’s filing (Feb. 9, 2016), it is alleged that a principal sum of $450,000 was owed, with interest accruing from July 31, 2012 and totaling more than $142,000 at the date the lawsuit was filed.
The total sum sought to be recovered in the lawsuit was $659,144.44, according to court records.
Attorneys for A. L. Thompson declined to comment Monday about the claim.
Mr. Ebanks commented regarding the claims made in the February writ: “This started off as a barter transaction, building supplies in exchange for two apartments. A request was later made to change it to a cash transaction by the claimant [Mr. Thompson].
“Therefore, the allegations [made in the writ] are wholly incorrect and misleading.”
Mr. Ebanks said he refuted the allegations made in the writ and stated they had nothing to do with his proposed Gran Palazzo development on Grand Cayman’s North Sound.