Connor Cochran and his companies filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy on January 4, one day before trial was scheduled to begin in Peter S. Beagle’s lawsuit against his former manager.
Beagle sued Cochran in 2015 for $52 million in damages, disgorgement of illegal gains and restitution, and dissolution of two corporations he co-owns with Cochran, Avicenna Development Corporation, and Conlan Press, Inc.
Cochran filed with United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California. The details are public record. Cochran listed these as the largest unsecured claims against him:
$626,558 Rimon, PC – Legal fees
$500,000 Peter S. Beagle – Pending litigation (est.)
$400,000 Justin Bunnell – Judgment (*)
$ 83,592 Gloria Cheng – Property settlement
$ 24,915 Kathleen Hunt – Court-assessed fee
$ 20,000 Law Office of James R. Thompson – Legal fees
$ 7,800 Son-Rise Property Management – Residential lease
Plus ten personal loans of $5,000 or less, and miscellaneous other small debts and claims.
(*) The Bunnell judgment relates to an investment by Sandbox LLC, a California partnership, and Justin Bunnell in The Last Unicorn screening tour launched in 2013. Projected for more than 150 different cities, Cochran and Beagle drove to tour destinations in a car loaded with stuff for sale. To quote the Bunnell complaint —
Specifically, on or around February 15, 2012, Defendant Avicenna and Plaintiff Sandbox entered into a written joint venture agreement whereby, in exchange for Sandbox’s remittance of Three Hundred Thousand Dollars ($300,000.00) to Defendants, Defendant Avicenna agreed to, among other things, oversee the distribution and marketing of the Picture through a “special limited release film tour” and remunerate Plaintiff, at a minimum, Four Hundred and Fifty Thousand Dollars ($450,000.00) and, thereafter, twenty-five percent (25%) of all profits derived from the the film tour and/or the exploitation of the Picture (the “Joint Venture Agreement”).
Commenting on the bankruptcy filing, Beagle’s attorney Kathleen Hunt said —
My favorite document so far is the one claiming that Connor has had literally $0 income for the past six months. (Presumably this is justified in his mind because the $ went to the companies, and he didn’t transfer it to his personal bank account – he just used the company bank accounts as if they were his personal accounts.)
She says the bankruptcy has put the lawsuit “trial on hold for awhile.”
[Thanks to Cat Eldridge for the story.]