JUDGMENT AND ORDER
E. Walker, Justice Maine Superior Court
the Court is Plaintiff State of Maine's
("State") complaint for fraudulent transfer against
Defendants Daniel B. Tucci, Sr. ("Tucci"), Beatrix
T. Tucci ("Beatrix"), and March 31, LLC. A bench
trial was held on February 12 and 13, 2018. For the following
reasons, the Court will enter judgment for the State and
grant relief as outlined below.
Findings of Fact
Court makes the following fact findings based on the record
of this case, including evidence received at the bench trial.
On January 23, 2009, Defendant Tucci inherited from his
father a ¼ interest in the property located at 104
Monument Street, Portland, Maine, valued at approximately
$81, 000. Tucci and his family have been longtime residents
of the property. On February 24, 2009, Tucci transferred his
interest to himself and his wife, Beatrix, as joint tenants.
The release deed was recorded in the Cumberland County
Registry of Deeds at Book 26666, Page 277. While Tucci claims
he made this transfer to provide for his family in the event
anything happened to him, he also acknowledged at trial that
"A lot of things can happen. You get sued by the
Attorney General's office, or you get sued by Ms.
Mitchell, or whatever." (Tr. 11:88.) There was no
consideration for this transfer.
September 23, 2009, Tucci formed March 31, LLC. Beatrix and
the Tuccis' three children were named members of the LLC;
Tucci is not a member. On November 24, 2009, Tucci and
Beatrix conveyed their joint ¼ interest in 104
Monument Street to March 31, LLC. The release deed was
recorded in the Cumberland County Registry of Deeds at Book
27424, Page 68. There was no consideration for this transfer.
The Tucci family continues to live at this property.
2009 tax return, Tucci claimed he paid $6, 000 in
"rent" and paid no real estate property taxes.
Tucci again claimed to have paid $6, 000 in "rent"
in 2010 and paid no property taxes.
many years, Tucci has secreted a substantial amount of cash
in his bedroom ceiling, some of which was saved over his many
years of living with his parents, some of which was the
result of a worker's compensation lawsuit, and some of
which was the result of a personal injury lawsuit. At trial,
Tucci testified that as of January 2010, he had roughly $65,
000 stashed in this location. However, it appears Tucci
actually kept as much as $90, 000 there. Throughout this
litigation, this money has been referred to as Tucci's
"nest egg." Despite this substantial nest egg,
because he failed to disclose the existence of this money to
the Maine Department of Health & Human Services
("DHHS"), Tucci received MaineCare from 2003 until
at least 2012. Following a stroke in 2010, Tucci began to
receive Social Security Disability Income ("SSDI").
Tucci also began receiving TANF benefits in late 2010, after
falsely claiming he had no income or liquid assets.
no later than 2000, Tucci was engaged in business as a sole
proprietor doing various handyman and home repair projects.
Tucci has been the target of numerous customer complaints.
For example, in 2008, Tucci was convicted of Class B theft
after charging $10, 000 to a customer's credit card
without her permission. In March 2009, another customer
obtained a $750 judgment against Tucci for damage done to her
home. The customer had to take Tucci to disclosure court in
order to execute the judgment. Another customer obtained a
$3, 500 judgment against Tucci in 2009; she was also forced
to take Tucci to disclosure court and eventually settled for
$ 1, 800. This is only a small sampling of the customers who
have been harmed by Tucci within the last decade.
2011, after receiving a number of consumer complaints, the
Consumer Protection Division of the Attorney General's
Office, led by AAGs Linda Conti and Carolyn Silsby, began
investigating Tucci. In November 2011, AAG Conti issued to
Tucci a civil investigative demand ("CID") for
documents and testimony. Tucci produced no documents in
response to the CID, and during his testimony, Tucci said he
was receiving food stamps and SSDI and needed help from his
church. He never disclosed the existence of March 31, LLC or
his nest egg.
subsequent meeting between Tucci and the AAGs, Tucci produced
a copy of a bank statement showing he had $14.06 in a joint
account with his wife. Based on Tucci's representations,
the AAGs believed him to be judgment-proof but continued to
pursue a permanent injunction barring him from conducting
business. In February 2012, the State filed a complaint
against Tucci alleging he had violated the Unfair Trade
Practices Act (UTPA). Throughout discovery, Tucci never
disclosed the existence of March 31, LLC. He disclosed the
existence of three bank accounts and claimed each contained a
balance of $25 or less. At the UTPA trial, one consumer
testified that in 2011, Tucci testified in disclosure court
to having no assets and no money. Another consumer testified
that Tucci had invited a lawsuit, saying, "I got nothing
and you will not get anything."
judgment dated April 9, 2013, the Superior Court permanently
enjoined Tucci from operating a home repair or handyman
business. He was ordered to pay $236, 500.50 in restitution
for the benefit of the consumers he had harmed. He was also
ordered to pay $140, 000 in civil penalties, which were to be
suspended as long as Tucci paid $250 per month toward the
restitution. To date, Tucci has made no payments toward the
trial, AAG Conti requested that Tucci fill out a financial
disclosure form. Tucci never completed the form. Until March
29, 2016, based on the various representations Tucci made to
the AAGs, his tax returns, and testimony of consumers at the
UTPA trial, AAGs Conti and Silsby believed Tucci had no
significant assets and was a tenant in an apartment at 104
Monument Street. Believing a disclosure proceeding would be
futile, the AAGs chose not to disclose Tucci.
March 29, 2016, the AG's office received a tip from the
adult child of one of Tucci's victims that Tucci may have
an ownership interest in 104 Monument Street and that the
property was listed for sale for $2.5 million. At that point,
AAG Conti asked that a title search be done and discovered
for the first time the transfers of 104 Monument Street from
Tucci to himself and his wife and then to March 31, LLC.
State served Defendants with a summons and complaint for
fraudulent transfer on April 8, 2016. The State thereafter
filed the complaint and returns of service with this Court on
April 19, 2016. During the litigation of this case, the State
subpoenaed records from four different financial institutions
where Tucci had accounts and learned that he had
misrepresented the amounts in some of his bank accounts
during the UTPA litigation. The State submitted expert
evidence that Tucci's ¼ interest in 104 Monument
Street was worth $81, 000 in 2009.