Company wins judgment against Midwest Amusement

The Shawano Leader/January 15, 2006
By Tim Ryan

A second creditor was awarded a foreclosure judgment against Midwest Amusement Park, LLC, on Friday after a hearing that included testimony on the intricacies of post office boxes.

Heyrman Construction Co., of Green Bay, was awarded an $80,094 judgment against Midwest, which is already slated for foreclosure next month due to a separate outstanding debt.

Midwest was ordered in November to pay $380,817 to Northeast Asphalt Inc., of Green Bay, for work done on the park's USA International Raceway, located at W5901 County Road BE in the Town of Wescott. The judgment also entitled Northeast to a construction lien foreclosure.

Friday's judgment will give both Northeast and Heyrman, which also had a construction lien on the property, the right to proceeds from the Feb. 8 sheriff's sale.

"It looks like there's simply been a failure on the part of Midwest Amusement Park to get serious about this matter," Shawano County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Grover said in awarding the judgment. "Midwest Amusement Park has basically, simply ignored the legal procedures of this action."

Midwest Amusement Park is a subsidiary of the R.C. Samanta Roy Institute of Science and Technology (SIST). SIST and its subsidiaries have purchased nearly $12 million worth of property in the area, which representatives of Samanta Roy have stated are intended to support a future international boarding school in the Town of Wescott.

Midwest, represented by a new attorney on Friday, mounted a defense based on claims that correspondence from Heyrman's attorney never showed up in the mail.

Naomi Isaacson, an attorney who identified herself as chief manager for Midwest Amusement Park, LLC, testified that she never received a notice of deposition or a request to admit or deny facts in the case.

Postal worker Randy Fayas testified on behalf of Midwest to the procedure followed by letter carriers who place mail in post office boxes, and what happens to mail that is incorrectly addressed and unclaimed.

He said the mail would have been returned to the sender.

However, Heyrman attorney John Herald told the court he had not gotten any mail returned.

Fayas testified that it didn't necessarily mean the mail wasn't sent back to Herald.

"There's always a small chance that mail could get lost, damaged or caught behind a machine," Fayas said.

Fayas was also asked whether he was affiliated with Samanta Roy's group.

"I know them," Fayas said.

Herald presented documents to the court showing that Midwest did respond to other correspondence sent to the same post office box, including a supplemental affidavit that included attached copies of the correspondence Midwest claimed never to have received.

Herald also read from a letter to the court written by Rebekah Brown, an attorney who represented Midwest at the November hearing, in which Brown suggested that Herald never sent any correspondence to Midwest.

"It is known in the legal community that some attorneys prepare legal documents that they never send out," and then later use them against the other party in court, Brown wrote, according to Herald.

"I seriously and strongly object to Ms. Brown's assertion as to my integrity and ethics," Herald said. "I am not aware of such a practice in this or any other legal community."

Herald noted that Midwest also failed to respond to correspondence from Northeast's attorney in that case.

"It's simply how they do business," Herald said.

Attorney Craig Maxwell, appearing on behalf of Midwest for the first time, argued that granting Heyrman's judgment when Midwest never received any legal correspondence would be "a Draconian measure."

He said it would be in Heyrman's interest to continue the legal process and delay the Feb. 8 foreclosure.

"I suggest they stay it," he said.

Grover rejected Midwest's arguments, and called claims that the mail wasn't received hard to believe.

"This is an egregious breach of procedure, and it does warrant remedy," Grover said.

The property was purchased in June 2003 from Water and Wheels Amusement Park, LLC, at a cost of $350,000. It was purchased on a land contract that has since been satisfied.

The racetrack opened in July 2004. Among the events hosted there have been a North America Can-Am Championship motorcycle racing event in June 2005 and an American Motorcycle Association race on July 30.

The racetrack has already put out a schedule of events planned for 2006.

Heyrman Construction Co. filed its civil suit in February of last year. Northeast Asphalt joined the suit in June as an intervenor, but its claim was resolved first.

Heyrman filed a construction lien against Midwest Amusement Park in October in the amount of $74,421. The amount awarded included accrued interest on the debt.

There is a third construction lien in the amount of $75,086 filed against Midwest Amusement Park by Fencing Plus, of Sheldon, Wis., that is still pending.

Hugo & Bramschreiber Asphalt Co., of Sobieski, Wis., has also filed a small claims case against Midwest Amusement Park. That matter had been scheduled for a court trial on Dec. 27, but was postponed until March 29 at 2:30 p.m.

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