Auto dealership mogul Denny Hecker has been sued by bankruptcy trustee Randy Seaver who accuses Hecker of lying, fraud and scheming to conceal cars, cash, property and other assets from the bankruptcy court.
If Seaver has his way, Hecker won't be allowed to use the protection of bankruptcy court to shield assets and escape the $767 million in debts he has amassed to scores of banks, casinos and other creditors around the country. Those creditors would then be free to fight for his $18.5 million in assets.
The once-flamboyant Hecker could lose all his assets and more -- he would be on the hook with each creditor until he either pays what he owes or works out a settlement....
Bankruptcy fraud allegations include:
- Using a corporation to hide his assets.
- Transferring assets to his girlfriend Christi Rowan
- Paying Rowan's living expenses and that of her daughter during his bankruptcy.
- Falsifying a lease to obtain a homestead exemption.
Seaver alleged that Hecker paid $159,000 in Rowan's credit card charges, including $30,000 for a dog and $11,000 for her vacations. He says that in the year leading up to his bankruptcy, Hecker paid Rowan $235,000 in cash and checks. Included among the cash was $7,000 for cosmetic surgery.
If the bankruptcy fraud allegations against Hecker are found to be true, he will definitely not receive a bankruptcy discharge and he could even face criminal charges. It's a shame when bankruptcy fraud happens because the vast majority of debtors filing bankruptcy have no intention of defrauding the system. Bankruptcy is a legitimate and moral way to discharge debts that you are no longer able to pay. It's important that debtors understand that hiding assets is completely unnecessary because there are so many bankruptcy exemptions available and most hidden assets will be discovered. Even if you are a high income debtor filing bankruptcy, exemptions can help you protect your most important assets. Please speak with an experienced bankruptcy attorney to create a viable bankruptcy strategy.