PNC affiliates look to cut ties with partners implicated in affordable housing scandal

At issue is control of six housing complexes scattered across Florida

Dec.December 05, 2017 09:45 AM

(Credit: Heron Pond Apartments)

A major U.S. bank is allegedly using a blockbuster scandal that ended with the convictions of two prominent Miami developers as a means to take control of six affordable housing complexes in Florida, according to documents that are part of a recently filed lawsuit.

Eight limited liability companies sued five affiliates of PNC and Oregon-based Columbia Housing SLP Corp in Miami-Dade Circuit Court on Nov. 6 to stop the takeover.

Seven days earlier, the PNC affiliates and Columbia sent letters to the eight companies stating that the firms were being removed as general partners and property managers for the six complexes, which are located in Immokalee, Lehigh Acres and Pensacola.

In one of the Oct. 31 letters, Kathleen Wu, a lawyer representing PNC and Columbia, informed Heron Pond Apartments II, LLC that the reason for the termination was due to its former owner, LLoyd Boggio, pleading guilty to four counts of money laundering on Dec. 12, 2016. He was subsequently sentenced to five years in prison. “Such criminal convictions constitutes grounds for removal,” Wu wrote.

Wu did not respond to a request for comment. Jeffrey Roth, the lawyer representing Heron Pond and the five other companies, said his clients will be dismissing the lawsuit. He declined further comment.

Boggio founded Carlisle Development Group, at one time the nation’s largest builder of affordable housing projects. It was at the center of a complicated scheme to allegedly steal more than $34 million in tax credits meant for developing rental apartments for low-income residents. According to federal court documents in Boggio’s case, he conspired with his successor, then-Carlisle CEO Matthew Greer, and five others to defraud the federal government. Greer also pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three years in prison.

State incorporation records show Heron Pond Apartments LLC is currently managed by Greer’s father and Boggio’s ex-business partner, Bruce Greer. He also manages plaintiffs TCG Crestview Park, TCG Crestview Park II and TCG Silurian Pond. Matthew Greer is listed as manager of three other plaintiffs, Morris Court II, LLC, Morris Court III, LLC and Carlisle Development Group LLC.

Heron Pond Apartments is a 100-unit multifamily building for senior citizens at 8421 Heron Pond Drive in Lehigh Acres completed in 2009. The same year, Carlisle opened the 72-unit Silurian Pond Apartments in Pensacola. Crestview Park is a two building development with more than 300 apartments for low income families finished in 2008. It is located in Immokalee. Morris Court in Pensacola consists of 74 low income apartments and also opened in 2008.

In the lawsuit against the PNC affiliates and Columbia, the Greer-controlled companies assert PNC’s actions were “unfounded, wrongful and in direct violation of the governing partnership agreements.”

The plaintiffs are seeking to reinstate themselves as general partners and property managers, as well as block the PNC affiliates and Columbia from “further interference with management and operation of the properties.”

Harunobu Coryne contributed reporting.

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