Coleman's 2 houses are to be auctioned

Co-founder of troubled firm behind in payments


May 06, 1999|By Bill Atkinson and Sean Somerville | Bill Atkinson and Sean Somerville,SUN STAFF

Two waterfront properties owned by a co-founder of the troubled downtown investment advisory firm, Coleman Craten LLC, are scheduled to be auctioned Monday, according to court documents and published notices.

Monica L. Coleman owes more than $1.8 million in principal and interest on the Pasadena properties, according to lawsuits. The auction was scheduled after Coleman failed to make payments on the homes, according to the lawsuits filed by an individual retirement account that lent her the money.

Maura DeMouy, an attorney representing Coleman, said her client would not comment.

"All of these matters are being litigated, and they're sensitive matters that she has no comment on for the public press," DeMouy said.

Coleman and her Baltimore-based financial services company face seven lawsuits seeking more than $2 million, including two filed by investors who allege that she defrauded them.

In one lawsuit, Jean K. Aziz and Dr. Shahid Aziz of Howard County say Coleman cited her home on Edgewater Road as a "potential source of funds," saying it could be mortgaged and that it had no liens against it.

In addition to lawsuits, the firm faces an investigation by the state securities division and possible eviction from its city-owned headquarters building at 7 E. Redwood St. for failing to pay rent.

Alex Cooper Auctioneers Inc. has been hired to sell Coleman's two-story home at 415 Edgewater Road, which has a two-car built-in garage, an in-ground swimming pool, and is located on Grays Creek.

The company is also scheduled to auction the neighboring house at 417 Edgewater Road, which Coleman also owns, according to court documents. It has two stories, a walk-out basement, a deck and a pier.

Paul Cooper, an auctioneer at Alex Cooper, said there is no way to predict how many bidders will show up.

He also said the lender can choose not to accept an offer that he deems too low.

To buy the properties, Coleman borrowed the money from the IRA of Watson Kime, according to the deeds of trust.

The IRA lent Coleman $650,000 in February 1994 to acquire the 415 Edgewater property at an annual rate of interest of 5 percent, the deed shows.

As of Feb. 24, 1999, Coleman still owed $650,000 in principal and $519,999 in interest, according to a lawsuit filed in the Circuit Court in Anne Arundel County.

In August 1996, the IRA lent Coleman $420,000 to buy 417 Edgewater at an annual rate of interest of 10 percent, according to the deed of trust.

As of Feb. 24, Coleman still owed $420,000 and $210,000 of interest, according to a second lawsuit filed in Circuit Court.

Neither Kime, who lives in St. Michaels, nor his attorneys would comment on the foreclosures.

Pub Date: 5/06/99

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