Madison - St. Clair Record

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Court records show Gori Properties prompt on taxes for more than $10 million in Madison County property, acquired in three years

State Court

By The Madison County Record | Feb 6, 2020

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EDWARDSVILLE – Randy Gori’s law firm contributed almost $160,000 to Illinois election campaigns last year, but he didn’t pay anything toward the 2018 property tax on the mansion owned by Randy and Beth Gori.

When he died on Jan. 3, the bill for three parcels on Mooney Creek Lane in Edwardsville stood at $49,423.04 plus $3,336.06 in penalties and $20 in costs. 

The county received full payment of $52,779.10 on Jan. 24. 

The owner of Gori’s office on Main Street, Julian and Gori Holdings, also incurred penalties for late payments last year. 

After missing the first three of four installments, Julian and Gori Holdings caught up by paying $48,264.72 plus $1,266.95 in penalties in October.       

Gori’s real estate company, Gori Properties, paid more than $200,000 in taxes and did so in timely fashion. 

Between 2016 and 2018, Gori Properties spent $10,017,000 on property purchases. 

In 2016, it spent $1,914,000 on six transactions. 

In 2017, it spent $7,283,000 on seven transactions. 

In a single transaction it paid BBR Properties $4,300,000 for eight parcels in Edwardsville, eight in Glen Carbon, and one in Wood River. 

It paid Citizens National Bank $1,800,000 for the Bohm Building, 100 North Main Street, on the city’s busiest intersection. 

It slowed its pace of acquisitions in 2018, paying $820,000 for three parcels. 

Gori Properties bought no properties last year. 

Gori and his firm also scaled back his campaign contributions last year. 

From 2010 to 2017, he and his firm contributed almost $280,000 a year to campaign committees. 

In 2018, an election year, he and his firm contributed $568,754.49. 

Last year, his firm contributed $159,920 and he contributed nothing. 

His firm could have covered most of the tax on his mansion if it hadn’t contributed $46,400 to four competing Illinois Supreme Court candidates last fall. 

First District candidates Jesse Reyes, Scott Neville, Shelly Harris, and Nathaniel Howse each received $11,600 from the firm. 

The firm returned to the campaign trail last month, contributing $7,500 to State Rep. Katie Stuart (D-Edwardsville). 

Evictions 

Gori acquired Ferraris left and right, but as landlord he evicted tenants for amounts that wouldn’t buy a used Ford Focus. 

His companies filed 17 eviction complaints in Madison County circuit court in three years, none of them involving more than $6,500 in overdue rent. 

Judgment was granted in his favor 15 times, by default or settlement.    

He retained Aaron Ankrom of Flanigan Law Office in Edwardsville, who filed two complaints for forcible entry on June 8, 2017. 

In the first complaint, Gori Property Management alleged that Nakia King owed $1,560 on an apartment at 305 Pine in Edwardsville. 

Ankrom attached a lease showing monthly rent of $650. 

King surrendered possession and confessed judgment without specifying its amount or any fee for Ankrom. 

In the second complaint, Gori Properties alleged that Alyssa Schmitt and Alexandra Schmitt owed $1,365 on an apartment at 152 Edwards Street in Glen Carbon. 

The lease showed monthly rent of $550. 

A judge granted default judgment for the rent plus $600 for Ankrom and $192 in court costs, for a total of $2,157. 

In December 2017, Gori Properties alleged that Elizabeth Evans owed $4,975 on an apartment at 1604 N. Main Street in Edwardsville. 

The lease showed monthly rent of $825. 

A judge granted default judgment of $7,005 in rent or assessments, $600 for Ankrom, and no costs. 

Also in December 2017, Gori Properties alleged that Krista Parsons owed $3,770.60 on 1118 Olive in Collinsville. 

The lease showed monthly rent of $725. 

No one served the complaint on Parson, and the case remained open as of Feb. 3. 

In February 2018, Gori Properties alleged that Marci Hartman owed $2,995 on 104 Third Avenue in Edwardsville. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $1,100 by a verbal lease. 

A judge granted default judgment of $5,767 for rent, fees, costs, and damages. 

On June 29, 2018, Ankrom advised the court that Hartman satisfied the judgment on damages. 

On the same date, Ankrom filed another complaint against Hartman over $4,020 at the same address. 

Hartman brought the complaint to trial, where she represented herself. 

A judge gave her 20 days to pay $2,200 or lose possession. 

The order stated that if she made the payment, the court would entertain further argument to determine the amount of back rent and damages. 

In May 2018, Gori Property Management alleged that Erika Caldwell owed $1,630 on an apartment at 113 West Linden Street in Edwardsville. 

By then Ankrom had joined Gori’s firm. 

His complaint showed $650 in monthly rent. 

To settle it, Caldwell confessed judgment of $2,397.50, agreed to pay $100 a month, and surrendered possession. 

In January 2019, Gori Property Management alleged that Ruwa Abdeljawad and Husain Aleid owed $6,443.64 on an apartment at 1720 N. Main Street. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $875. 

To settle it, they confessed judgment of $6,635.64, agreed to pay it in two months, and surrendered possession. 

Also in January 2019, Gori Property Management alleged that Samuwel Jackson owed $1,830 on an apartment at 512 N. Main Street. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $475. 

A judge granted default judgment with fee and costs, totaling $2,597. 

Last April, Gori Property Management alleged that Chantel Irving owed $1,400 on an apartment at Village Court in Glen Carbon. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $675. 

Irving paid the back rent in two weeks and Ankrom dismissed the complaint. 

Also last April, Gori Property Management alleged that Nicholas McDonald and Daniel Tady owed $1,265 on an apartment at 1500 Schiller in Edwardsville. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $850. 

To settle it, Tady confessed judgment of $1,382 and agreed to pay it in two months. 

Last May, Gori Property Management alleged that Alexandra Bomer owed $3,070 on an apartment at 1604 N. Main Street. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $850. 

To settle it, Bomer surrendered possession but reserved damages for a further hearing that hasn’t come to pass. 

Last June, Gori Property Management alleged that Meghan Wickenhauser owed $2,550 on 849 Madison Avenue in Edwardsville. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $950. 

To settle it, Wickenhauser confessed judgment of $2,550, agreed to pay it in two months, and surrendered possession. 

Also last June, Gori Realtors alleged that Andre Davila owed $2,355 on an apartment at 518 Hillsboro in Edwardsville. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $850. 

A judge granted default judgment with fee and costs, totaling $3,132. 

Last August, Gori Property Management alleged that Namiko McDaniel owed $5,280 on an apartment at Village Court in Glen Carbon. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $775. 

A judge granted default judgment with fee and costs, totaling $6,144. 

Last September, Gori Property Management alleged that Steven Wilson owed $2,900 on 616 Sheridan Avenue in Edwardsville. 

The complaint showed $1,200 in monthly rent. 

To settle it, Wilson confessed judgment of $2,567.50, agreed to pay it in two months, and surrendered possession. 

The settlement provided that if Wilson didn’t pay in full, Gori would be entitled to $5,135, the full amount due. 

Last November, Gori Realtors alleged that Molly Hendry owed $2,650 on an apartment at 152 Edwards Street in Glen Carbon. 

The complaint showed monthly rent of $600. 

A judge granted default judgment with fee and costs, totaling $3,527. 

No judge in any eviction affixed a legible signature to his or her order.

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