Another Pillar of Harlem Twice Fallen Victim to the Courts

by

Thursday July 13, 2017, Time: 2pm

Where: U.S. Bankruptcy Court (Manhattan, 1 Bowling Green), 7 fl., Judge Sean Lane 

If one ever wonders how Harlem as one of the most historically recognized African American neighborhood has fallen to gentrification with little trace of its original culture and heritage, then, he or she is invited to stack the court room on July 13 to witness the fate of

477 West 142nd Street.

 

Tuesday, July 12, 2017, New York —   It is a foregone conclusion that the Open Hearing to be held at the United States Bankruptcy Court Southern District of New York in Manhattan on Thursday July 13, 2017, at 2pm, before the Honorable Judge Sean Lane, case No. 15-12178(SHL) will have immediately stripped four Harlem elderly sisters of their home ownership rights downgraded to a slippery road of tenancy which is usually known in the harsh reality of Manhattan real estate to lead to forcible exit.  

The story of 477 West 142nd Street , the landmark Housing Development Finance Corporation- Coop (HDFC-coop) property in question, would have been just another classic example depictive of how several properties in Harlem have ironically gotten away from many low-income blacks and Hispanics families over the last decade if it were not for two distinct exceptions;  that in this case, the property is home to the Community Mayor of Harlem, Queen Mother, Dr. Delois Blakely, and, that there is enough credible allegations flying around to warrant an HPD or Attorney General investigation, appropriate enforcement and resolution by the City and State in the interest of the protection of shareholders from retribution.  

The Travesty of Justice of the Bankruptcy Court —  Instead of finding sanctuary under the protection of the court on Thursday, the judge is expected to sign-off on a re-organization plan that will pay-off the lenders, other creditors including administrative fees in full regardless of the validity of their claims.  The travesty is –  It leaves the elders empty-handed without any remuneration for over 36 years-worth of sweat equity in compliance with the typical American dream.  Judge Lane’s decision will have marked the second time the court system would have failed to go above and beyond its jurisdiction to render justice to the seniors.

The Travesty of Justice of the Supreme Court – :  This case never would have reached bankruptcy court, had proper sanctions been authorized by the Supreme Court to thwart it. 

In 2007, with the building heavily indebted in tax arrears, two shareholders from the building acted unilaterally to take out a $650,000 inflated loan (18%) from a certain Madison Park Investors LLC & ER Holdings against HDFC policy (interest rate limitation), the loan was underwritten and to secure payments on the mortgage, the lender was said to have withheld $200,000 of that money in escrow.  It is learned that fourteen months later, that same lender would commence foreclosure action against the building to seize the property.  Furthermore, the case, while being adjudicated before presiding Judge, the Honorable Milton A. Tingling exposed all kinds of double dealings, deliberate deception and criminality in act and in practice.  Under the watchful eye of the judge, it was found that the signatory person to the loan, one of the attorney of record, Nathaniel Mcleon, was a fraud.   He was eventually apprehended for imposture, immediately arrested, and duly convicted for deception, with the intention to bring harm to the building’s founder, Queen Mother, Dr. Delois Blakely, (New York Post Article 2010 “Gail in the Courthouse”).  

The Travesty is —  Judge Tingling made no attempt to dismiss the case, but instead stepped out of its boundaries to make flawed compromises at the level of the building’s  coop board in the vein of ordering the property for Auction.  

Home to the Community Mayor of Harlem ––   The hard-hitting reality of Harlem’s metamorphosis has finally reached the home of Queen Mother, Dr. Delois Blakely, an icon who is fondly referred to as the Community Mayor of Harlem.  At stake is the lost of a Queen Mother to the neighborhood who founded the abandoned building some thirty-seven years ago, acquired it from the City of New York in 1982, converted it into a low-income affordable housing to serve in particular women and children in need.   

Time for Action Still —  There is still time for hope for the elders.  The Attorney General’s office and or Housing Preservation Department still has time to act and stop the sale of the property, revisit the wrongdoings in the case, and assist the elders into a fair and just re-organization plan.