After nearly 3 years of contentious litigation the jury returned an award in favor of Ayala’s client.
Ayala represented the plaintiff, a Venezuelan immigrant investor, who under the promise of a phony development deal paid for the purchase price of a land contiguous to land already own by the defendant. In reliance of the promise to build warehouses in the newly acquired land (and a portion of the land already owned by the defendant) the plaintiff allowed the defendant to be in the title of the land. Soon after closing the defendant knocked down the fence separating both lands, did nothing to build any warehouse, and effectively enlarged its existing land and business.
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Ayala sued the defendant in early 2016 under theories of unjust enrichment, intentional misrepresentation and violation of the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Practices Act. After short deliberations, the jury delivered a unanimous verdict in favor of Ayala’s client on all counts, and declaring that the deed created a constructive trust in the land for the benefit of the plaintiff and that the defendant turn over the land to its rightful owner.
The land conservative market value is $517,000. In addition to the land the jury awarded the plaintiff $89,000 in rental value for the time the defendants used the land without paying.
As told by Eduardo A. Maura: “getting the land through a constructive trust was key. We did not want to be foreclosing on these defendants, and be in more litigation.”
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