Judge permanently bans developer from selling condos

Richard Mohring Jr., wife Deborah previously arrested on contempt of court charges

From left: Eric Schneiderman, Deborah Mohring and 711 Willis Avenue
From left: Eric Schneiderman, Deborah Mohring and 711 Willis Avenue

A Supreme Court judge has permanently banned developers Richard Mohring Jr. and wife Deborah from selling condos in New York State after they failed to make court-ordered repairs at the Cambridge Park Condominiums in Long Island.

Mohring and his wife were previously arrested on contempt of court charges for failing to pay $215,000 in restitution and violating three court orders to repair a damaged retaining wall at the 37-unit complex at 711-725 Willis Avenue, in Williston Park, N.Y.

“By their deceptive and evasive conduct, Richard and Deborah Mohring put the residents of Cambridge Park Condominium at risk,” said Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who announced the ban this afternoon. “This office will continue to take action against real estate developers, like the Mohrings, who cheat homebuyers.”

Judge Carol Huff also ordered the couple to pay $81,500 in civil fines, representing $500 each for the first 23 units in the complex and another $5,000 each for the remaining 14 units, plus another $2,000 in costs to the state.

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Schneiderman originally filed suit in 2012 against Mohring and his wife, who developed the complex through an entity called R&D Willis Avenue.

Following a 2007 fire at the former rental complex, authorities discovered that the developers had failed to repair a crumbling retaining wall and had no permanent certificates of occupancy, and later failed to make repairs despite repeated promises to do so.

Mohring filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection the night before the AG ordered him to pay the $215,000 judgment, however he claimed his only unsecured debt at the time was a $700 Visa card bill.

Mohring was given three days to pay the judgment — or face arrest.  By February 2013, he was taken into custody after failing to make the payment, but the arrest was vacated pending the payment of $50,000 and the handover of financial records to the court.

At the time, Mohring’s lawyer, Eugene Russo, said that Mohring was the victim of the economic collapse in 2008, and noted that he was being unfairly targeted as a small developer. By July 2013, the AG moved to permanently ban the developer from the sale of securities, including condos, co-op apartments and homeowners associations in New York State.