Unitas, wife may owe creditors up to $3.2 million Ex-Colt quarter, wife hold meeting with creditors. By: Michelle Singletary

April 11, 1991|By Evening Sun Staff

Football great John C. Unitas and his wife, Sandra, list assets of about $1.4 million but owe creditors a potential $3.2 million.

The former Baltimore Colt quarterback and his wife met with a half-dozen of their creditors yesterday in a brief meeting to disclose their assets and debts as part of the procedure involved in reorganization of assets under Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

During most of the meeting, at the Fallon Federal Building at 31 Hopkins Plaza, Unitas sat quietly with a hand covering part of his face. His wife did not testify.

The Unitases filed for Chapter 11 reorganization in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in February. A Chapter 11 allows individuals or corporations to continue operating while in bankruptcy.

The Unitases' assets include their Baltimore County home, appraised at $305,000; an Ocean City condominium which has been on the market for about two years and is listed for sale at $200,000; a vacant lot in Florida estimated to be worth $10,000; stock portfolios worth $29,261; and a few American-made cars and a truck. Unitas also holds a promissory note valued at $124,216.

While Unitas has a pension fund valued at $642,957, un

der the bankruptcy code it is exempt from being liquidated by creditors.

The Unitases' attorney, James R. Wooton, said during the meeting that he expects to submit a payment plan to creditors within the next few weeks. The couple has 120 days to submit a plan of reorganization to the bankruptcy court.

"Our goal is to move this thing along as quickly as we can," Wooton said at the hearing.

Wooton added that the Unitases plan to set up a fund to repay FTC their unsecured creditors.

Neither Wooton nor the Unitases would comment after the meeting, which lasted just 20 minutes.

Signet Bank has been attempting to collect on nearly $4 million in failed loans made to Unitas and several partners in the mid-1980s for the purchase of a circuit-board manufacturing company. The loans were personally guaranteed by all the partners and their wives. The bank has already received a judgment against the Unitases for $491,000 for part of the loan amount.

The Unitases' secured debt -- that which must be paid before all other debts -- amounts to $912,911, it was disclosed during the meeting.

In 1984, Unitas and two associates, J. Clark Powers and John Maas, purchased National Circuits Inc. The partnership, called the Maryland

Circuit Boards Corp., was formed specifically to purchase NCI. Union Trust, which subsequently merged with Signet, lent the partnership $3.5 million to buy the company.

The maker of printed circuit boards for computer, automotive and telecommunications uses was located in Reisterstown but was moved to Seton Industrial Park in Baltimore.

To help with the purchase and renovations to the Seton facility, Unitas and his partners received loans and guarantees from the city and state.

The Unitases' petition lists as its largest creditors Signet, the Maryland Industrial Development Financing Authority, the Trustee Loan Guarantee Program of Baltimore City, the mayor and City Council and the Baltimore Economic Development Corp.

Last May, NCI's assets were sold to Atlantic Electronics Inc. for $1 million.

Unitas testified yesterday that he is now employed by the New York parent company of Atlantic Electronics as vice president of customer responsibility.

Present at the meeting were former partner Maas and his wife, Jayne. Last June, Maas filed suit against his partners in Baltimore County Circuit Court. Maas, a certified public accountant, was a vice president of NCI but claims in his lawsuit that he was wrongfully fired in June 1988.

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