A gigantic legal marijuana grow in East Oakland pissed off their neighbors for years by running diesel generators nonstop. But they also weren’t paying their mortgage, and when their bank sued, two of the managing partners disappeared in a cloud of smoke.
When a Denver-based legal cannabis company called Green Sage bought up two legacy Oakland buildings known as the Tinnery and the Cannery to build a legal indoor cannabis grow in 2019, they brought the promise of hundreds of jobs and loads of city tax revenue. Instead, they brought headaches in the form of huge, unpermitted diesel generators which they ran nonstop, around the clock, reportedly for more than a year. The noise and pollution infuriated neighbors and city officials, and the Bay Area Air Quality Management won a legal injunction to shut the generators down in September 2022.
But behind the scenes, Green Sage was apparently not even paying their mortgage. The properties fell into delinquency, and were seized by their lenders and foreclosed on just three weeks after the generator injunction.
It gets crazier! The lender, Canadian mortgage bank Romspen, sued Green Sage in March of this year, because they would very much like their $51,507,018 back. But KQED reports that lawsuit has run into a curious snag, because two of the three defendants have completely disappeared, and the mortgage company has been unable to serve them with these lawsuits.
The two defendants who disappeared are Kenneth E. “Kenny” Greer Jr., and Bruce D. Miller, both listed as managing partners for Green Sage. (A third partner, Patrick J. Koentges, was located in Denver and served papers in March.) A July legal filing claims Romspen has made 23 attempts to contact them via process servers and private investigators.
That filing claims that when Romspen served to original lawsuit, “Defendants have seemingly disappeared overnight, leased out or sold their prior residences and are quite clearly evading Plaintiff’s numerous attempts to personally serve Defendants with the Summons and Complaint.”
KQED adds that Green Sage was also sued for $1.75 million by United Rentals in late July for allegedly not having paid for the diesel generators. According to KQED, “Between January 2018, when the Green Sage project was just getting started, and the end of June 2023, the company, its officers and related companies were sued at least 32 times.”
Image: Richard T via Unsplash