Fredericksburg couple sues realtor Boerne for fraud over sale of Hill Country Ranch

A Fredericksburg couple sued a Boerne realtor for fraud over the sale of their Hill Country ranch.

Bruce Williams and his wife, Linda Davis, allege the broker made misrepresentations and failed to disclose material facts during the sale last year of the approximately 2,700-acre White Cross Ranch in Kerr County to a partnership affiliated with the broker.

The couple are seeking more than $1 million in damages from real estate broker Harold “Trip” duPerier III, his brokerage, the duPerier Texas Land Man and other entities.

The defendants denied the allegations, calling the lawsuit “an attempted reshuffle by an opportunistic pair of plaintiffs who are asking for more than $1 million more than the $7.25 million they have already received from the sale of the White Cross Ranch”.

In a statement, the duPerier Texas Land Man said it had attempted to resolve the dispute “amicably and without court costs, but to no avail.”

“duPerier Texas Landman brokers and agents strive to be the best professionals in ranch sales,” he said Monday. “It’s a pity that the sellers are not satisfied with the results of their transaction.”

Williams and Davis in June 2020 signed a listing agreement with the duPerier Texas Land Man to sell the ranch. Of the society website says its “client list consists of movie stars, CEOs, music stars and other influential clients”.

The couple put the ranch, which they bought in 2010, up for sale for $8 million. At least part of the ranch was used as hunting-ground for native wildlife and imported exotic animals.

New Mexico rancher Henry McDonald submitted an offer and, after some negotiation, agreed to buy White Cross Ranch for $7.25 million in late 2020.

In January 2021, Williams and Davis were notified that another buyer wanted to purchase the ranch for the same price.

According to the defendants’ response to the lawsuit, the purchase agreement “specifically named Henry McDonald and/or his assigns as the purchaser.” The defendants add that the sales contract did not contain any prohibition of assignment. Instead, the contract “explicitly provided” that McDonald’s could assign its rights under the contract to any party.

DTB Investments LP stepped in as buyer.

Williams and Davis “became curious” about DTB and conducted their own research, according to their lawsuit. They discovered that duPerier was the director of DTB. State records show that duPerier is the director of DTB’s general partner.

The defendants confirmed that duPerier had an interest in the partnership and that he was buying the ranch “for the benefit of his family,” the lawsuit says. “Although the plaintiffs were concerned that this information would not be disclosed, based on the defendants’ representations, they have decided to proceed with the closing as planned.”

After the deal closed in February 2021, Williams and Davis said they learned DTB negotiated to buy the mission from McDonald’s for $571,500.

“Defendants have not disclosed that the actual purchase price for the property was $7,821,500” – the original purchase price plus the disposal price, the couple’s lawsuit says.

The representation that duPerier purchased the ranch for his family’s enjoyment was false, Williams and Davis’ complaint adds. They say the “intent was to use the property for development and sell it for a profit,” citing DTB’s March 2021 purchase of the 4,837-acre YO4 Ranch just north of the White Cross Ranch.

In August, DTB sold 1,000 acres of White Cross Ranch to RRCT Ltd. of Kerrville. The couple believe the land was sold at “a significantly higher price” than what DTB had bought from them six months earlier.

The following month, the lawsuit adds, DTB sold the approximately 1,700 remaining acres of White Cross Ranch and YO4 Ranch to Will-O Ranch LP – another partnership affiliated with duPerier.

Late last year, Will-O Ranch sold the 1,700 acres and approximately 857 acres of YO4 Ranch to Austin-based 4B Ranch Partners LLC. Again, Williams and Davis believe the land was sold at “a significantly higher price” than DTB bought it at earlier in the year.

“We have trusted and relied on the DuPerier entities as trustees,” Williams and Davis said in an emailed statement. “They owed us the highest duties known to the law. They have misled, distorted and failed to disclose information to us, their customers, for the sole purpose of lining their own pockets.

In addition to the fraud claim, Williams and Davis are suing duPerier, his company and partnerships, and one of his agents who handled the sale of White Cross Ranch for breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract and violations of law. on deceptive marketing practices.

The defendants say the lawsuit is “without merit”. They add in their response that the plaintiffs “were aware of – and agreed to – many of the actions they now complain about.”

The lawsuit was originally filed in February in Kendall County, but was returned to San Antonio District Court last month.

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