Another day, another RHOA legal issue! *sigh*
This time it’s Peter Thomas the husband of supermodel Cynthia Bailey of The Real Housewives of Atlanta. Thomas, the owner and sole proprietor of the hot Atlanta eatery Bar One, is being accused of not paying his bills.
Thomas’ landlord, Eloshua Elliott, filed a complaint in Fulton County superior court saying Thomas owes more than $100,000 and he hopes to evict him soon.
“…defendant breached a lease agreement by failing to pay rent and other fees including late fees, bank charges, real estate property taxes and unpaid utilities.”
According to Rodney Ho of the AJC,
The lawsuit said Thomas hasn’t paid his rent of $10,000 a month since March, 2013 through the end of the year. (Late fees are another $5,000.)
Elliott also separately filed a complaint against Thomas’ entertainment group for the property across the street at 670 Memorial Drive which houses the Bailey Agency, Bailey’s modeling and talent company. There, he owes more than $29,000, the complaint summary said.
Peter Thomas, in an exclusive interview this afternoon, said the problem is his primary landlord Showtime for the Bar One property. (Elliott is partial land owner.)
Prior to March, he said they had been taking his money for a year and not passing it on to the bank First Fidelity for the mortgage they owe. He said Showtime is in foreclosure proceedings and according to Loopnet, the property was auctioned off in October, 2013 but does not say to whom (Thomas’ attorney recommended he not release the names of the owners of Showtime.)
Now before y’all start saying Peter and Cynthia are ‘broke’… he has been quite adamant that he’s still been paying the rent…. just not to the people who owned the property. He told me a while back that the property was in foreclosure and he was attempting to purchase it from the bank.
Rodney Ho confirmed that Thomas has been placing his rental payments in escrow with his attorney until Showtime straightened out its issues with its bank for almost a year now.
“I’ve been caught in the middle of the crossfire,” Thomas said. In reality, he has no problem financially paying his rent.
Cynthia Bailey moved into the new property Industry Space at 670 Memorial Drive and the lease began in June, 2013, at a rate of $2,700 a month, according to that complaint.
Thomas said he is paying the bank directly for Industry Space. “I don’t owe them anything,” he said. He said the bank has no issue with him and he’s annoyed the landlord Elliott has tried to kick him out twice. He noted he spent more than $120,000 in improving what had been an empty garage.
In legal filing, the Bar One lease ended Dec. 31, 2013 and has not been extended. Peter says he had a five-year option and the lease is set up so since he did not get a notice saying his lease is over, it was automatically extended. So he has remained and operates the bar normally in the interim.
The lease, signed in late 2010, has an escalated rent schedule that started at $2,500 a month in early 2011, jumped to $5,000 later in 2011, then $7,500 a month in 2012 and a whopping $10,000 a month last year.
Elliott’s attorney Dana Tucker Davis said she hopes to get a judge to kick them out soon if they don’t pay up. She hopes to get a “For Lease” sign up soon on both properties.
As of today’s date, Bar One is still up and running but no word yet on when/or if it will be moving. Stay tuned!
What do you think of this recent development?