Jury finds bank misled developer on loan modifications, sold debt to competitor
DALLAS – A Dallas jury returned a substantial verdict against BBVA Compass after finding that the bank and one of its executives committed fraud during loan renewal and modification negotiations with the developer of three luxury subdivisions in northeast Tarrant County.
Jurors deliberated for three hours before reaching the unanimous verdict on Dec. 13 for developer David Bagwell and partnerships he formed to build the Broughton, Whittier Heights, and Old Grove subdivisions in Colleyville.
The lawsuit stems from efforts by Mr. Bagwell during the 2008-2009 financial crisis and real estate downturn to modify financing for the three subdivisions. Lead trial lawyer Derrick Boyd of the Texas law firm Boyd, Powers & Williamson presented evidence that a BBVA Compass executive repeatedly misled Mr. Bagwell into believing his loans were being renewed. Based on those promises, Mr. Bagwell did not seek other financing.
Jurors heard testimony that the bank was simultaneously negotiating in secret to sell the loans at a substantial discount to a competing developer. After acquiring the discounted loans, the developer foreclosed on Mr. Bagwell’s three properties and forced him into bankruptcy.
“Emails from Compass connected the dots for this jury,” said Mr. Boyd. “We were able to show that while Mr. Bagwell was actively trying to work with the bank to keep these developments operating, Compass was misleading him and working behind his back to sell his debt to a competitor.”
The jury found that the bank’s fraudulent actions caused harm to the parties. The case is David Bagwell et al v. BBVA Compass and Sam Meade, Cause No. DC-14-00991 in the 101st Judicial District Court in Dallas County.
Mr. Bagwell and the three partnerships were represented by a trial team including Mr. Boyd, Kristy Campbell and Matt Meyer of Boyd, Powers & Williamson of Decatur, Texas; appellate counsel Jeffrey Levinger of Levinger PC of Dallas; and attorney Jeffrey T. Hall of Dallas. Two related entities intervened in the lawsuit and were represented by Peyton Healey of Powers Taylor LLP of Dallas.