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plicated story that dates back to 2011, when the city first filed a lawsuit seeking to wrest control of hundreds of rental units away from the couple, claiming their management was akin to that of “slumlords.” By then, the Squireses had acquired 77 code violation actions in an eight-year span and accrued nearly $500,000 in citations, fines and special assessments. Known as a receivership, city officials have described the legal action as an “extreme remedy” but one that was needed to immediately address pervasive issues with unsafe and substandard conditions at 26 of the Squireses’ properties located within city limits. After years of legal wrangling that included numerous delays and appeals, Judge Dale Reinholtsen eventually appointed a third-party monitor — known as a receiver — to inspect the properties and order needed repairs. Adams briefly served as that receiver twice in 2011, a role which now belongs to former county planning commissioner Jeff Smith, who was the Squireses’ preferred choice. But in the interim, the Squireses filed a civil lawsuit against Adams, his son Andrew Adams and their company California Receivership Group, claiming they jumped the gun in reaching out to tenants before a final court order in the receivership case had been filed. After a jury found in the Adamses’ favor last July, Mark Adams successfully petitioned the court to order the Squireses to reimburse him for the costs he incurred defending the trespassing suit and for work he did during his stint as the receiver six years ago. In February, Reinholtsen ordered the Squireses to pay Adams just over $158,000 — a mixture of legal costs, fees and compensation for about four weeks of receiver work — then essentially authorized Adams to secure the money by
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using the 26 properties as collateral. When the Squireses failed to pay the $158,000, Adams says he turned to the deed of trust he held on the properties to collect by filing what’s known as a “non-judicial” foreclosure, equating the situation to that of a homeowner who defaulted on their mortgage. Barring judicial intervention, Adams says, the properties are now slated to be sold as a bundle Nov. 27. The starting bid: $277,566.73. “Squires has no one but himself to blame for this court order and these fees,” Adams says. “It’s just so typical that he can’t acknowledge the power of a court order. … I understand exactly how to litigate with these people at this point.” Floyd, who has represented the Squireses for several years, says he disagrees with Adams’ analysis of the situation but declined to discuss any legal avenues he and his clients might be exploring. “It’s more legal maneuvering,” Floyd says of Adams’ plan. “That’s what is going on.” The way Adams sees it, Squires has a few options at this point, including declaring bankruptcy or asking a judge to stay the foreclosure proceeding, saying “it would not be the first objectionable thing he’s done in this case.” Neither, in Adams’ view, is viable. “He didn’t make one effort to pay one dime of the judgement and I would suspect Judge Reinholtsen would not be sympathetic to him if he came in trying to stop the sale,” Adams says. “He should have just paid it.” That still could happen but Adams says the bill has gone up by more than $100,000 in the meantime, between accrued interest and the expenses he and his company incurred trying to get paid. That includes filing a July motion that is now pending before Reinholtsen in
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Published on Nov 9, 2017