The receiver of Fairview Memorial Cemetery has filed his third report in Delaware County Common Pleas Court and said he is reaching out to potential purchasers.
A.C. Strip, Esq., a Columbus-based attorney specializing in corporate insolvency, was appointed to care for Fairview Memorial Cemetery by Delaware County Common Pleas Judge David Gormley at a hearing on May 23.
The owners of the cemetery, Theodore and Arminda Martin, are currently facing engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and dozens of theft charges in Delaware County Common Pleas Court for allegedly selling cemetery plots and other items to Delaware County individuals, but never following through with delivery and instead spending the money at a casino in Pennsylvania.
Strip filed a report Tuesday and stated that he had previously reached out to a company that acts as a broker for cemetery businesses with the intent of selling them the cemetery. However, Strip reported that the contract supplied by the broker was not acceptable or sensible and said “there were any number of one-sided clauses which would have unduly burdened the receivership estate with no contravening benefit.”
Strip said he attempted to negotiate the clauses in good faith but the company refused and Strip broke off negotiations.
The report states that Strip has “reached out in two additional directions to discuss with potential purchases the acquisition of the property,” but added that it would be premature to speculate on the results of these contacts. Strip said he would inform the court as soon as he receives any serious offers.
In the report, Strip also thanked the group of volunteers that have maintained the cemetery since before he was appointed.
“…this report must include an acknowledgement that ‘but-for’ the ‘volunteer corps’ that there would be a major issue with maintenance,” Strip wrote in the report. “All of the names are not known by the Receiver but a sincere ‘thank you’ is officially extended.”
Strip previously reported that when he was appointed to the case, there was an overdraw in the cemetery’s bank account, but reported that after performing several burials, the trust account contained $3,650 as of July 13.
The Martins remained in prison for a separate federal tax evasion charge Thursday. They are scheduled to stand trial in Delaware County Common Pleas Court on Oct. 10.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.