Bankruptcy Didn't Stop Barber From Living the Good Life

by Mark Friedman  on Monday, Dec. 6, 2010 12:00 am  

In the fall of 2008, Barber said, he was trying to find buyers for his property, "as opposed to me just filing bankruptcy and saying, 'Guys, deal [with the troubled loans].' I was trying to work with the banks.

"The whole goal of all this, obviously, was I was trying not to file bankruptcy," Barber said.

Barber, though, arranged for friends to put money in his Nware account and the account didn't show up on his bankruptcy filings, which is required since he used it as his personal account, according to Judge Barry's order.

James Van Doren, a friend who lives in New York, was one of the several people who helped Barber keep the money flowing. Instead of using his bank account, Barber gave Van Doren a briefcase containing $30,000 in cash.

"I don't remember how it all transpired," Barber said of the transaction. "I was just living in a real rough place, where whenever I was in New York, and ... it was more just a protective measure that [Van Doren] had [the money.]"

Van Doren said in a deposition taken for the case that he realized that the money was probably in dispute.

"I knew he had creditors after him, so I did know there were probably people that were trying to recover it," he said.

In the fall of 2008, Barber also endorsed a check in the amount of $64,000 to Van Doren, who then gave the money back to Barber. Barber testified that he transferred the money that way because he was "pretty sure" the check was made out to "an entity" and that in New York "they're much more strict on banking as far as what checks you can deposit."

But Barber couldn't recall a time when someone refused to let him deposit the check.

In August 2008, Barber transferred $180,000 to Knight's law firm. Barber testified that he didn't know why he transferred the money to the law firm, but he said he owed Knight a lot of money. In November, the law firm transferred $150,000 to Van Doren's company, Epsilon Investments LLC, money that was then used to pay Barber's living expenses. Those transactions weren't filed in Barber's bankruptcy schedules.

Van Doren said in his deposition that he understood the money was Barber's.

In February 2009, Justin Salter of Fayetteville, Barber's former brother in-law, started providing Barber with money. Between February and June 2009, Salter gave him more than $100,000.



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