Jake Frydman tends to start a “group” after he begins a project. Here too Jake created
an umbrella once he thought he was a player. The cards crumbled as the lawsuits piled up.
From Virginia to Florida, Long Island to Staten Island the fraud encompassed a long
5+ year period.
PRESS ARTICLES RELATING TO THE FRAUDS
Ocala Star-Banner (Ocala, FL)
June 12, 2002 SILVER SPRINGS SHORES, Fla.
Lake Diamond Golf & Country Club, which fell short of the goals set by its original European investors, has been purchased by a New York developer. The gated golf course community is the latest in the East Coast portfolio of Savoy Retirement Communities Inc., a multi-faceted developer which specializes in residential communities and assisted living facilities. The recorded acquisition price was just over $4.5 million, according to county records, and a $6 million mortgage with Community National Bank of Virginia has been filed with the county clerk’s office.
“The prior owners were not able to complete their vision,” said Jacob Frydman, Savoy president and CEO. “We want to raise the standards. I see a spectacular foundation of a community — a magnificent gated golf course community around a beautiful 43-acre lake that is just not for retirees. It hasn’t gotten the attention it deserved.”
Lake Diamond was founded by Atlantis Ventures Inc., a European group which purchased 532 acres of vacant land for almost $2 million from local developers Albert Peek and John Rudnianyn in late 1996. That block of property was carved almost simultaneously from the 1,900 acres Peek and Rudnianyn had recently purchased in the Silver Springs Shores area.
“We kept a small limited partnership in the original group,” said Peek of Atlantis, which was headed locally by former Mercedes-Benz executive Ray Funk. “Savoy brings extensive experience in lifestyle communities and the community, for a lack of better words, seems to have welcomed them with open arms.”
Frydman held a reception for more than 140 Lake Diamond residents at the Ritz Historic Inn on June 3, and plans another meeting with area real estate brokers on Thursday, also at the Ritz. His ideas for the future, including the fast-tracking of a long-anticipated clubhouse, were apparently well received at the residents’ meeting. “I thought it was a fantastic presentation,” said Anna Petro, who has lived in Lake Diamond with her husband Charles for three years.
“He made a lot of promises that we hope he keeps. The first was the clubhouse.” Peek added, “The main thing he said was, ‘Don’t listen to what I say, watch what I do.’
” Atlantis Ventures announced big plans for Lake Diamond in 1997, envisioning an international setting for the community, complete with equine facilities, a bakery, restaurants, airport shuttle service, shopping centers and planned attractions tours — none of which happened. And of the projected 950 dwellings Atlantis hoped to have completed by 2002 in an aggressive five-year plan, just over 80 homes have been built or are under construction.
Funk, who has since moved back to Europe, could not be reached for comment.
“I think they (Atlantis) came in with some good ideas,” said Vic Vickery, a Lake Diamond resident and local real estate agent who met with Frydman for more than an hour a few months ago. “I’m not familiar with their financial background, but I do know that the things that were promised did not come to fruition.”
Vickery is encouraged by Savoy’s claims, but is taking a wait-and-see attitude.
“I don’t want to be negative,” he said. “They have made us a fair amount of promises. They will have to put a significant amount of money into the development.”
Plans for the 15,000-square-foot clubhouse are in the works and plans should be submitted to the county shortly, said Miles Christian Anderson, a local consulting engineer. Among other amenities, the area will also include exercise rooms, tennis courts, a competition-size pool, and two smaller pools for children’s wading and adult sunbathing. “I think he is going to do a Larry Roberts,” said Anderson, referring to the developer who has brought life back into the stagnant Golden Ocala Golf & Country Club community.
Ocala Star-Banner (Ocala, FL)
February 6, 2005
A stipulated purchase offer of $8.75 million is on the table for Lake Diamond Golf & Country Club, a move that is among the latest actions rising from the bankruptcy case involving the property’s current owner.
Maitland-based Pine Properties & Development has entered into an agreement to acquire the property affiliated with Jacob Frydman’s Lake Diamond Associates LLC, which filed for Chapter 11 reorganization last year.
The sale faces several legal hurdles before it can be approved, including a separate motion calling for the property to be auctioned. A court hearing on that motion is scheduled for Feb. 24 in Jacksonville. According to state records, Pine Properties & Development is headed by Michael P. Spellman, who declined comment when contacted by the Star-Banner.
A new developer would be the third for the Silver Springs Shores golf community, which was founded in 1996 by a group of mostly European investors operating under the name Atlantis Ventures. Lake Diamond Associates, which is a subsidiary of New York-based Savoy Retirement Communities Inc., run by troubled developer Jacob Frydman purchased the balance of the development’s property in 2002 for $4.5 million.
Last year, Lake Diamond Associates filed for bankruptcy relief, listing $6.1 million in debt to about 30 creditors, the bulk resulting from a $6 million mortgage with Community National Bank. A separate Savoy affiliate, Liberty Village Associates Limited Partnership, also filed for Chapter 11 protection last year for a failed project in Lynchburg, Va., facing a $20 million lawsuit from Community National Bank for alleged nonpayment on loans, and $8 million in lawsuits from hundreds of creditors.
Lake Diamond Golf & Country Club, which features an 18-hole golf course, has less than 100 property owners in a community platted for more than 900 homes.
WHITHER STILLWATER’S?: While the property housing the closed Stillwater’s Saloon on State Road 200 has a “For Sale” sign on it, the broker listing the land says it may be soon leased out to a new operator. Mark Harrison, president of Fort Pierce-based ADevCo. Inc. said the property, which includes the 13,000 square foot building and accompanying 1.56 acres, carries a list price of $1.6 million. But he feels the property would probably be more marketable with an established tenant already in place.
“We are working on a sale or lease of the property, but we are close on offers to lease,” said Harrison, whose company has handled more than $300 million in real estate transactions.
The property has been owned since 1987 by Jet Power Inc. Miami, which acquired it from C.L. Dinkins Jr. for $725,000, according to county records. Jet Power, which is based in Miami, also owns the adjoining land fronting Northwest Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue that features an Appliance Direct outlet.
BOOMERANG BUY: A 20-acre parcel at the center of controversy last year because of its projected usage for a sewage plant, has been sold to its original owner.
RLR Investments, which is the developing agent for nearby Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club, recently sold the property back to the Castro family for the same price it had acquired it for early last year, a reported $308,250. The parcel, which is across the south entrance to the upscale community on Northwest 80th Avenue, was once considered for a sewage treatment plant, a joint-venture project with the county that would have handled two million gallons of human waste daily.
But neighbors in the area complained loudly about the proposal, and county commissioners, citing other concerns as well, later unanimously voted down a special-use permit for the property.
NO SELL ON E-BAY: Even though a sign says it is still available via bidding on e-Bay, an Ocala commercial property apparently failed to draw any interest during its 30-day stay on the popular Internet auction site. A vacant 1.5-acre parcel of land across from Star Motel on South Pine Avenue didn’t register a bid during an offering time that ended Jan. 26.
The starting price for the property, which was formerly the home of the Mister Han and Shanghai restaurants, was $600,000. The land is owned by Ocala Land Holdings Inc., a St. Peterburg-based company. An officer listed with the operation, Larry Williams, did not return a call from the Star-Banner inquiring about future plans for the property.