A Madison County associate judge will use parts of a collusion complaint he threw out June 12 in his attempts to determine whether an Edwardsville divorce has merit.

The Wisconsin-based maker of Ziploc bags and other household products had attempted to intervene in the divorce of Sara and Thomas Buske, claiming the couple was colluding to defraud the company out of millions it is owed.

The grounds hearing is set for 10 a.m. Friday.

Madison County Associate Judge Duane Bailey dismissed a collusion complaint filed by S.C. Johnson of Racine, Wisc. last Friday when he granted an oral motion by attorney Vicki Cochran. Cochran represents Thomas Buske in his divorce from his wife of 15 years, Sara Buske.
Sara Buske is suing for divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences and mental cruelty.

Bailey ruled that a charge of collusion can only be applied to a divorce by one of the divorcing parties, not a third party, because collusion goes to the grounds for a divorce.

S.C. Johnson had moved to dismiss the Buske divorce on the grounds the couple cooked up the dissolution to hide assets.

S.C. Johnson is entitled to $203.8 million from Thomas Buske under a judgment rendered by a court in Wisconsin.

Thomas Buske is facing multiple counts of fraud in a Wisconsin federal court for allegedly defrauding S.C. Johnson of millions through inflated invoices from his trucking company. He has pled not guilty to all charges.

Although Bailey dismissed S.C. Johnson's collusion complaint, he said in the June 12 hearing that he would use elements of it to determine whether the divorce was valid. He said that certain accusations about the couple's conduct during the divorce that the company raised had left him with unanswered questions.

S.C. Johnson had cited the timing of the Buske divorce eight days after the $203.8 million judgment and trips the couple took together just before and after the divorce filing to Las Vegas and Los Angeles as evidence the divorce was a sham.

S.C. Johnson is represented by Andrew Velloff and Thomas Keefe Jr. Sara Buske is represented by Howard Feldman. Thomas Buske is represented by Vicki Cochran in the divorce.

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