Three Montezuma County properties associated with a recent marijuana raid have been put on notice for foreclosure, according to recent legal notices submitted to The Journal.
The three properties are the Ocean Pearl Restaurant on Main Street, a home on South Chestnut Street and a farm on County Road V in Lewis.
The reasons for the foreclosures listed on the notices include payment defaults and “other Violations of Deed or Trust covenants.”
If debts are not repaid by March 27, the properties will then be put up for public auction, according to the notice.
Specifically, the properties are at 300 E. Main St. (Ocean Pearl), 316 S. Chestnut St., and 21875 Road V. All three were among a handful of sites raided by multiple agencies in August.
The grantors listed on the foreclosure notices are Jimmy Dang and Qi Yu Wu, who were both arrested and charged in U.S. District Court with manufacture and possession with intent to distribute 1,000 or more marijuana plants, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
The original beneficiary, or lien holder, is Dolores State Bank.
According to the notices, the reason listed for the Lewis property’s foreclosure is “Default in payments and other Violations of Deed of Trust covenants.” For this property, with a deed of trust date of June 20, 2014, the original principal amount is listed as $107,000, with an outstanding principal balance of $95,924.44.
The other two properties were combined on the same notice, both with a deed of trust date of Aug. 5, 2011. The reason for their foreclosures was listed as “Violations of Deed of Trust covenants.” Their original principal amount is $175,525, with an outstanding principal balance of $84,782.58.
According to the Montezuma County Assessor’s website, the Ocean Pearl property was purchased for $195,000 in September 2010, the South Chestnut Street site for $206,500 in August 2011 and the Lewis property for $139,000 in June 2014.
Keenen Lovett, an attorney with the firm Kelly R. McCabe, is representing the bank in these foreclosures. He said the case is in the middle of litigation right now, and if defendants Dang and Wu are able to prove they have not violated the deed’s covenants and provide the payments they owe, their property will not be put up for public auction in March.
He would not specify what the violations were, citing the ongoing litigation, but added that the defendants had requested time extensions on the court hearing to gather additional evidence.
The raids and subsequent federal indictments involving Dang and Wu were connected to a Chinese or Chinese-speaking drug ring under investigation since a large raid in Rifle in 2016, according to the Drug Enforcement Agency in Grand Junction.