Tom Martino bankruptcy: Troubleshooter sues bank, may accuse Fox31 of wrongful termination
Update: Another day, another development in Troubleshooter Tom Martino's bankruptcy.
The latest? Martino is suing the bank that floated the possibility he'd shifted assets in his filing -- and he hints in court paperwork that he may whack Fox31, the station that employed him until this summer, with a claim of wrongful termination, possibly based on age discrimination.
As you'll recall, International Bank, which wrote a $2.83 million loan on which Martino and his wife Holly allegedly defaulted, filed paperwork reading in part: "International Bank believes the Debtor (Martino) may have transferred certain assets to Ms. Martino with the intent to hinder, delay, or defraud International Bank and other creditors and/or without receiving reasonably equivalent value in exchange." Among the assets listed by the bank, according to the Denver Post, were "a house worth $4.3 million, furnishings and art worth $750,000, three aircraft with combined value of $725,000, Friesian horses worth $100,000, a Bentley Arnage car worth $200,000, cash accounts holding $4.6 million and real estate equity of $11.7 million."
In response, reports the Denver Business Journal's Heather Draper, who's doing the heaviest lifting on this story, Martino is suing International Bank for "'willfully' violating a stay... put in place once Martino filed for bankruptcy."
In addition, Martino submitted an amended personal property list that upped the value of said property from $821,085 to $2.06 million.
Note that in Holly's 2004 bankruptcy, the amount of property was readjusted upward after her ex-husband, Mike Willis, complained that she hadn't included anything she'd been awarded in their divorce, whose value he estimated at the low hundreds of thousands.
In addition, Draper reveals that the property's worth could grow even more as the result of what the Martino filing describes as "a possible claim against Fox31-Denver, for wrongful termination, age discrimination, other statutory and common law claims including loss of future wages, breach of contract."
Looks like the Troubleshooter aims to make more trouble. Check out previous coverage below -- and note that KHOW program director Dan Mandis has yet to respond to our inquiry about a key hour of Martino's radio show that's missing from the outlet's online archive.
Original item, 12:16 p.m. September 29: Self-proclaimed Troubleshooter Tom Martino's bankruptcy claim, on alleged liabilities of $78 million (a figure he disputes), continues to play out in public. But amid new reports about an order that he and wife Holly give de facto depositions in the case comes an odd development. An hour from Martino's KHOW radio show in which he publicly attacked Mike Willis, Holly's former husband, is missing from the station's public archives.
Willis learned of the situation after reading a Monday Westword post in which he alleged document-shifting in Holly's 2004 bankruptcy filing that echoed allegations made by International Bank, a creditor in her husband's current Chapter 7 filing. As is noted in the piece, Martino began attacking the item even before its publication and called Willis "evil" at one point during the first hour of his KHOW broadcast, which gets underway at 9 a.m. He also said Willis lied about the claim -- but Willis later produced a document from the bankruptcy that backed up his story.
Curious to discover what else Martino said about him on the air, Willis visited the show's online archive. But when he clicked to play the 9 a.m. hour of the Monday broadcast, the first hour of Martino's program from the previous Friday, September 23, popped up -- and that's still the case at this writing.
We've left a message for KHOW program director Dan Mandis asking if this situation is a technical glitch, or if the hour was removed for another reason -- like, perhaps, the fear that Willis, who's not a public figure, might take legal action based on the attack. If and when we hear back from him, we'll update this post.
In the meantime, the Denver Business Journal reports that U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Michael Romero granted a motion by International Bank to essentially depose Tom and Holly. The DBJ adds that International Bank also requested:
• all documents related to or reflecting any transfers of any assets; all documents related to real property the Martinos have owned -- individually, jointly or otherwise -- in the four years prior to the bankruptcy filing.
• all documents related to the ownership of automobiles, boats, airplanes, helicopters or any other vehicles.
• profit/loss statements for Martino's businesses and a list of all shareholders, members, officers and/or managers for any business entity Martino had been involved with for four years prior to his filing.
One more thing: Jay Leno made sport of the Troubleshooter on the September 19 Tonight Show in a monologue snippet that appears on KHOW's Martino page. It's a gentle swipe that uses the Troubleshooter's financial troubles as a way to needle the White House. Watch it below.
More from our Media archive: "Tom Martino, bankrupt Troubleshooter, to be featured speaker at wealth-building convention?"
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Westword's biggest stories.
- Tara Breed, R.I.P.: Denver Woman Dies in 100-Foot Fall From Paiute Peak
- Donald Trump on "Big Problems" With CO Pot Laws, Flip-Flop on Legalizing Drugs
- Reader: $29,000 Per Year Isn't Enough for an Adequate Standard of Living in Denver