In re Sutton (06-60373, Adv. No. 07-06006)

Plaintiff Omega Cotton Company brought two claims against Debtor Loyd Bill Sutton. The first claim was based on a district court judgment in the amount of $308,430.25. The second claim was based on alleged fraud by the Debtor, resulting in a claimed loss of $4,523,400.00. Omega sought to have both claims exempted from discharge. On the first claim, the court determined that res judicata did not preclude a finding that the debt was dischargeable under 11 U.S.C. ยง 523(a)(4), because of the narrow definitions of fraud and defalcation as applied to the bankruptcy code. The court held that debt dischargeable. The court found that the second claim was precluded by res judicata, because Omega had a full and fair opportunity to litigate those claims in the previous district court case. Summary judgment was entered for the debtor.

Thursday, October 2, 2008