BELLEVILLE — A man who owned a commercial building in East St. Louis is suing the owner of a demolition company and a public official, alleging that his building was wrongly demolished for scrap.

Mark Gates filed a complaint on Nov. 17 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Charles Powell Jr. d/b/a/ Powell's Demolition and Robert Betts, alleging conversion, trespass, nuisance, fraud, nuisance and interference with business expectations.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that in Nov. 21, 2014, he was damaged by being deprived of the value of his building, claiming that Powell caused a fire to start at an adjoining building, falsely obtained a demolition permit issued by Betts, and tore down the structures to take bricks and steel beams for resale. The plaintiff holds the defendants responsible for the alleged loss of his building without his permission.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks judgment against the defendants in an amount to be proven by jury, plus punitive damages. He is represented by Penni S. Livingston of Livingston Law Firm in Fairview Heights.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number 16-L-615

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