League City lawyer reneged on boat business deal, suit claims

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Oct. 12, 2010, 4:22am

GALVESTON - A Galveston County sailboat rigger claims a League City attorney withheld his share of profits from a boating business they ran, recent court documents say.

In a lawsuit filed Sept. 30 in Galveston County District Court, plaintiff W. Ken Bunting III claims that Darold Maxwell failed to fulfill his promise of providing monetary backing and general administration for their marine electronics business in exchange for the plaintiff's labor and contributed capital.

Bunting consequently received no income despite "investing 18 months of his time and money in reliance upon the defendant's promises and representations," the original petition argues.

The plaintiff worked on the defendant's personal vessel for several years prior to the start of the business.

According to the suit, Bunting was originally reluctant to enter the venture, but Maxwell convinced the plaintiff to join on the guarantee that he would support it financially as well as purchase a 32-foot Grand Banks show boat to serve as the company's marketing tool.

The plaintiff then chipped in approximately $50,000 in startup capital, the suit states.

Bunting insists that the defendant, however, did not purchase the vessel nor perform his obligatory services for the business.

Maxwell reportedly furthered another business instead using the resources he and the plaintiff culled together, the suit says.

It also shows that the defendant persuaded Bunting to sell his real property in Kemah before completely abandoning the business, leaving the plaintiff without any chance of increasing his assets and property value.

West & West LLP is representing Bunting.

Galveston County 212 th District Court Judge Susan Criss is presiding over the case.

Case No. 10-cv-3786

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