Oxford condo lawsuit appeals mixed, court says

By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal

OXFORD – A Lafayette County chancery court decision in a condominium loan dispute was upheld in part and reversed in part for additional consideration Tuesday.
In 2011, Lafayette County Chancellor Glenn Alderson agreed with lawsuit defendants who were developers Van Buren Group LLC and purchasers of condos in a 30-unit project in Oxford.
Van Buren borrowed $5.4 million from BancorpSouth in 2001. After paying more than $4.9 million, Van Burean defaulted on the loan.
The defendants were Shelby K. Brantley Jr., Robert Crumptom of Van Burean, and purchasers Norma S. Bourdeaux, Langston Oxford Properties LP, Susan M. Bryan and John and Lynn Albriton.
The appeals court disagreed with BancorpSouth’s contention that Langston, Bourdeaux, Bryan and the Albritons were obligated to report their purchases.
Judge Ermea Russell, writing for the 5-0 decision, – five judges not participating – said Alderson was correct in ruling in their favor.
The bank also argued on appeal that the chancery court improperly shifted the burden to the bank to rebut their other defenses.
The Russell opinion disagreed with the bank there, too.
But her ruling also said genuine issues of fact remain about whether the bank received full payment of the amount owed, based on the funds received from the units sold.
Thus, Alderson erred in finding in favor of the developers, too, the appeal court stated, and ordered this part of the lawsuit returned to Lafayette County.
Before that happens, the bank may appeal to the Mississippi Supreme Court.
patsy.brumfield@journalinc.com