A share of a Hamilton County landfill owned by former Chattanooga Lookouts investor John J. Woods will be sold by the court-appointed receiver in his alleged Ponzi scheme case.
A U.S. District Court judge in Atlanta has approved the sale of Woods’ 26.6% stake in the group that owns the Birchwood landfill for $100,000 to two local men who already own most of the rest of the land. interests in the tract, according to the records.
Charles William Lind Jr. and Richard Greg Krum are currently members of the group that owns the 25-acre parcel they and Woods purchased in 2017 for construction and the debris dump, according to a filing by Receiver A. Cotten Wright. .
Although the 26.6% stake in the property is currently held in Woods’ name, he said through his attorney that it should have been part of a fund that is being sued involving the alleged Ponzi scheme.
In August, federal regulators claimed Woods had run “a huge Ponzi scheme for over a decade” that defrauded more than 400 investors.
The Securities and Exchange Commission complaint says the fund, which is called Horizon Private Equity, has raised more than $110 million from investors with promises of a 6-7% rate of return.
But the complaint said the investments are “worth far too little for there to be a realistic prospect that the Ponzi scheme will be able to repay existing investors their principal, let alone the promised returns.”
Woods, an East Ridge native who now lives in Marietta, Georgia, said he did nothing wrong.
The Birchwood property is at least the second Hamilton County investment that the Receiver, a North Carolina attorney, has sold tied to Horizon.
In October, U.S. District Court Judge Steven D. Grimberg agreed to let the Chattanooga Lookouts buy Woods’ share of the minor league baseball team for $1.87 million.
The receiver in the Woods case is working to liquidate Horizon’s assets in the Ponzi scheme, including more than $55 million invested in Chattanooga-area entities.
The Birchwood property was purchased in 2017 for $175,000 by the group, of which Charles Carter Hunt also has a 10% stake, according to court records.
The property company said the land is landlocked, the cells in the landfill have a limited lifespan, and when that period expires, the cells must be covered, capped and monitored to mitigate potential environmental ramifications. Considering activities on the land and foreseeable usage limitations, the parcel was valued at $0, according to a court filing.