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Raymond Chabot Inc. v. Serge Cote Family Trust

United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Greenville Division

August 22, 2014

Raymond Chabot Inc., as Receiver for XXXX-XXXX Quebec Inc., Plaintiff,
v.
Serge Côte Family Trust and Public Storage, Defendants.

TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER

MARY G. LEWIS, District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on the motion of Plaintiff Raymond Chabot Inc., as a Canadian court-appointed Receiver for XXXX-XXXX Quebec Inc. (the "Receiver"), for a temporary restraining order under Rule 65 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Based on the findings of fact and conclusions of law set forth below, the Court hereby GRANTS the temporary restraining order.

FINDINGS OF FACT

1. This action involves a Canadian business named XXXX-XXXX Quebec Inc. (the "Debtor"), which was a dealer of RVs in St. Nicolas, Quebec. The National Bank of Canada holds primary security interests over certain of the Debtor's assets and property (the "Assets"). In connection with insolvency proceedings, on February 20, 2014, the Quebec Superior Court in Canada appointed Raymond Chabot Inc. as Receiver with respect to those Assets. On February 28, 2014, the Debtor also made an assignment in bankruptcy, and the Receiver was also appointed as trustee in bankruptcy of the Debtor.

2. The Canadian court empowered Receiver to take possession of those Assets and to control the Debtor's property, place of business, and premises, and to initiate, prosecute, and continue appropriate proceedings regarding Debtor's Assets and property.

3. One of the Assets is a 2014 Winnebago Itasca Ellipse RV, Model No. IRR42Q1D, Serial No. 8862 4UZFCUCYXECFU (the "RV"). Pursuant to the orders of the Canadian court, Receiver is lawfully entitled to possession of the RV.

4. According to the Receiver's submissions, the RV was in the possession of an entity named the Serge Côte Family Trust in Margate, Florida. Despite the Receiver's efforts to recover the RV, it was moved without the Receiver's permission and without any information as to its whereabouts.

5. Shortly after learning of this development, the Receiver returned to the Canadian court and received an order for the examination/deposition of Mr. Serge Côte, the trustee and representative of Serge Côte Family Trust. In his deposition on July 15, 2014, Mr. Côte admitted that he provided the RV to DZL RV Center in Broward County, Florida. Upon subsequent investigation, the Receiver learned that the RV was no longer located at DZL RV Center.

6. Subsequent investigations led the Receiver to believe that the RV had been moved to a storage facility in Greenville, South Carolina. An investigative firm hired by the Receiver was in contact with someone named "Mr. Chin", who was apparently preparing to sell the RV, and was about to arrange an appointment with the firm to see it.

7. Upon learning this information, the Receiver prepared a Motion for Directions and a Motion for Assistance of a Foreign Court to present to the Canadian court to assist in the recovery of the RV. After the motions were served on Serge Côte Family Trust, the investigative firm could no longer contact Mr. Chin and could consequently not locate the RV.

8. On August 6, 2014, acting on the Receiver's motions, the Canadian court entered a Judgment ordering the immediate seizure of the RV, giving custody of the RV to the Receiver or one of its representatives, and permitting any foreign courts, such as this Court, to assist the beneficiaries of its order and judgment.

9. After entry of the Judgment, an employee of the Debtor verified that the RV was located in Greenville, South Carolina, specifically, at a storage facility operated by Public Storage, located on 290 Rocky Creek Road in Greenville, South Carolina.

10. Under the circumstances, and based on the submissions presented to the Court, the Court finds that there is a substantial and imminent risk that the RV may be moved again without the permission or knowledge of the Receiver, and that an ex parte temporary ...


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