5/24/13 – TG: Judge denies request for hearing delay on properties

Texarkana Gazette
May 24, 2013
By: Lynn LaRowe – Texarkana Gazette

Judge denies request for hearing delay on properties
Assets associated with the Alamo Ministry are to be sold to partially satisfy a $30 million lawsuit judgment

A federal judge has denied a request by a loyal Tony Alamo follower to delay a hearing concerning ownership of six Fort Smith, Ark., properties associated with the controversial ministry.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Bryant ruled last month that the properties could be sold by the U.S. Marshals Service to partially satisfy a $30 million judgment Alamo owes two men raised in Alamo’s group.

A jury found Alamo guilty of battery, conspiracy and outrage in a civil suit filed by Texarkana lawyer David Carter on behalf of Spencer Ondrisek and Seth Calagna.

Since Bryant granted permission for the property sale, attorney John Rogers of Clayton, Mo., has filed claims of ownership on behalf of 63 Alamo loyalists.

Rogers recently filed a motion to withdraw as attorney for the Alamo followers, stating that he only filed the claim notices as a courtesy and never meant to be their lawyer.

Rogers’ motion states that the only Alamo Ministry members he wishes to represent are Tony Alamo and his wife Sharon Alamo.

On the same day Rogers filed his motion to withdraw, Sally Demoulin, a longtime Alamo Ministry member who acts as the group’s bookkeeper, filed a motion to delay a May 30 hearing set to address the property issue.

Carter filed a response to Demoulin’s and Rogers’ motions opposing any continuance and opposing Rogers’ withdrawal from the members’ cases.

On Wednesday, Bryant signed an order denying Demoulin’s motion to delay the hearing. Bryant has not ruled on Rogers’ motion to withdraw from the members’ property claims.

In addition to the claims of the Alamo members, who have taken the position that the church properties are owned communally by them all, Alamo’s stepdaughter, Christhiaon Coie, has asserted an interest in the properties as well.

Coie was awarded a $100,000 judgment against Alamo in the 1990s when he refused to produce the body of Coie’s mother, Susan Alamo.

Tony Alamo had Susan Alamo’s body disinterred from a mausoleum on property in Crawford County, Ark., in advance of an IRS seizure of the property.

Susan Alamo’s body was produced after a Crawford County judge issued an order that Tony Alamo be jailed until the location of the corpse became known. Tony Alamo was serving a federal prison sentence at the time for tax evasion.

Susan Alamo’s body was produced and identified using dental records, but the judgment awarded Coie was never paid. In recent filings, Coie’s lawyer claims that the judgment has grown to more than $500,000 with interest.

Bryant is expected to address Coie’s claim at the May 30 hearing as well.

In: 2013, Breaking News

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