CT developer files suit over Smoron estate property

Verderame files suit over Smoron land deal
Mary Ellen Godin
December 17, 2010
The Record-Journal

SOUTHINGTON – Local developer Carl Verderame filed a lawsuit Thursday against local attorney John T. Nugent and others for failure to turn over a parcel of land he needs to build an $18 million sports arena.

West Hartford attorney Richard Weinstein filed the lawsuit in New Britain Superior Court on behalf of Verderame’s company, Central Connecticut Contracting LLC. It also names the estate’s temporary co-administrators and heirs Samuel Manzo and Kathleen Scirpo.

Weinstein could not be reached for comment.

As conservator for property-owner Josephine Smoron, Nugent signed a deal with Verderame in 2008 to sell him the property for $1.6 million through a trust Nugent created in May 2009.

Smoron died a month later.

But Manzo, who is named in Smoron’s 2004 will, has contested the validity of the trust and Nugent’s ability to create and fund them. The matter is now before two probate courts and Hartford Superior Court. Scirpo has also hired an attorney to fight the trusts.

Verderame has filed a lis penden on the property, and wants a superior court judge to order the sale.

But Manzo’s attorney Barry Pontolillo said Verderame doesn’t have an enforceable contract because his purchase agreement states the sale “must be subject to probate court approval” and no court has granted it.

In fact, Pontolillo said a Hartford Superior Court judge ordered Wednesday that Nugent take no action on the property until the matter is settled.