Welcome to the latest edition of Courting Disaster, your guide to the strange, off-beat and occasionally tragic civil filings in Miami-Dade County. This week we have (alleged) tales of woe about pernicious uncles, hangry security guards, foul tax preparers and a secret plot involving the CIA and a Miami Beach library. Let’s dig in!
The case of the denied food upgrade
Elvia Zambrano vs. Lion Services, Inc. and Nicholas Hunt – 2019-021573-CA-01 – filed July 22 Perhaps he was tired of the food. Perhaps he just had a bad day. But whatever happened on Oct. 14 of last year is a day that will live in infamy, at least for Elvia Zambrano, a loss prevention officer for the Intercontinental Hotel.
At the time, Nicholas Hunt was working as a security guard for Lion Services, which, in turn, had a contract with the hotel. As part of the deal, security guards such as Hunt were allowed to get food for free – but only from a limited menu.
Hunt, the suit goes, demanded items not on the free menu and became belligerent when a chef refused to give it to him. Zambrano was called in to reiterate the hotel’s policy which, apparently, did not cool Hunt down.
“Nicholas Hunt became vulgar, belligerent, confrontational and shouted at Elvia Zambrano, who was then 74 years old, and approached her rapidly,” the suit states.
Though the suit does not claim Hunt did anything but the above, Zambrano claims his actions led to a transient ischemic attack – aka a “ministroke” – and other complications since the incident. She is seeking unspecified damages, but in excess of $15,000.
The case of the pilfered client list
The Tax Team, Inc. vs. Norris Atesiano and Green Box Tax Services, Inc. – 2019-022194-CA-01 – filed July 26Taxes are, well, taxing, perhaps especially to those who have decided to make looking through deductions their lives’ work. But it gets all the harder when, as The Tax Team claims, its invaluable client list gets stolen via less-than-James-Bond levels of spycraft.
Norris Atesiano, according to the suit, worked at a Tax Team office for three tax seasons. During that time, he had access to the client list, as did many employees.
On Feb. 9, while still working at the firm, he allegedly filled out a return for an unspecified client, listing the preparer as “Green Box Tax Services Inc.” A few days later, Green Box’s state corporate filing was amended to name Atesiano as its CFO.
The suit claims that Atesiano could have only known about, and stolen, the client in question if he utilized the client list — something he decidedly was not authorized to do.
The case of Uncle (Not) Moneybags
Parker Wallach vs. Richard Wallach – 2019-021754-CA-01 – Filed July 23 The daydream of a rich, hitherto unknown, uncle dying and providing a huge inheritance is an old, if clichéd, trope. Less known is the uncle who steals your college savings account, as Parker Wallach claims happened to him.
Wallach said his grandfather, William, created a pre-paid college fund for him shortly after his was born, partly because the elder Wallach was dying of cancer and knew he would not be around to see his grandson grow up.
After he died, the stewardship of the plan fell to Richard Wallach who, according to the suit, cashed out Parker Wallach’s college fund in 2016 without telling anyone. In fact, it was not until Parker Wallach attempted to enroll that he discovered that the money was gone and “he would not be able to attend college.” He claims the damages are in excess of $50,000.
The case of the Miami Beach CIA agent
Faraud Karieem Muhammad vs. Bryant Capley – 2019-20482-CA-08 – Filed July 10In a wide-ranging and generally incoherent complaint, Faraud Karieem Muhammad claims that the branch manager of the Miami Beach Regional Library, Bryant Capley, is a CIA agent who is monitoring his brainwaves via a secret website.
He claims the website, which he does not indicate how he gained access to, contains a 1999 video that “falsely accuses me of being a pedophile.” But instead of a depraved act, Muhammad says he simply had to urinate – due to a flare-up of a herpes condition – and there happened to be a child nearby.
Capley, he claims, has been following him from Illinois to South Florida starting in the early 2000s, telling various elected officials and members of the public that Muhammad is a pedophile. Finally, he says that all staff members of the Miami Beach Regional Library are working for the CIA under Capley’s direction.
In response, attorneys from Miami-Dade County, have filed a motion to dismiss the suit. They claim that Capley is immune from such actions due to his (county) governmental employment and, besides, Muhammad has failed state a specific cause of action.
And that’s all folks. Stay tuned next time for the latest rundown on the odd stuff happening in the local court system. Tips? DM me on various social media outlets or just use Twitter:@editordanevans.