March 14, 2018
to foreclose a mortgage on certain real property owned by the
named defendant et al., brought to the Superior Court in the
judicial district of Waterbury, where Scott Tedesco, trustee
of the Angelo P. Tedesco Money Purchase Pension Plan was
cited in as a plaintiff; thereafter, Scott Tedesco, trustee
of the Heritage Builders of Waterbury, LLC, 401 (k) Profit
Sharing Plan was substituted as the plaintiff; subsequently,
the matter was tried to the court, Dooley, J.;
judgment for the substitute plaintiff as to liability;
thereafter, the court, Lager, J., granted the motion
for a judgment of foreclosure filed by the substitute
plaintiff and rendered judgment of foreclosure by sale, from
which the named defendant et al. appealed to this court.
J. Garcia, for the appellants (named defendant et al.).
S. Donnelly, for the appellee (substitute plaintiff Scott
Tedesco, trustee of the Heritage Builders of Waterbury, LLC,
401 (k) Profit Sharing Plan).
Lavine, Keller and Bear, Js.
defendants, Resmije Agolli and Fikri Development, LLC
(Fikri),  appeal from the judgment of
foreclosure by sale rendered in favor of the substitute
plaintiff, Scott Tedesco, trustee of the Heritage Builders of
Waterbury, LLC, 401 (k) Profit Sharing Plan. On appeal,
the defendants challenge the trial court's findings with
respect to the dates of disassocia-tion and removal of Gina
Antonios as member and Joseph Antonios as manager of
Fikri. The defendants also claim that the
court improperly found that Agolli, as a member of Fikri, had
the authority to bind Fikri to the mortgage at issue in the
Tedesco, as trustee of the Angelo P. Tedesco Money Purchase
Pension Plan, serveda complaint seeking foreclosure of a
mortgage on several parcels of real property in favor of the
Angelo P. Tedesco Money Purchase Pension Plan. He alleged
that he was the holder of the note and mortgage. The
defendants filed an answer in which they denied all of the
plaintiff's substantial allegations against them, and
they asserted five special defenses. The defendants later
stipulated that the plaintiff was the owner and holder of the
note, and that the note was in default. The defendants also
limited their special defenses to lack of consideration,
duress, and no meeting of the minds.
a trial to the court, the court found that the defendants had
not met their burden of proof on the remaining special
defenses and it rendered judgment in favor of the plaintiff
as to liability. The court subsequently rendered judgment of
foreclosure by sale in favor of the plaintiff.
examining the record and the briefs and considering the
arguments of the parties, we are persuaded that the court
correctly rendered judgment of foreclosure by sale in favor
of the plaintiff. The issues raised by the defendants were
resolved properly in the trial court's thorough and well
reasoned memorandum of decision rendering judgment in favor
of the plaintiff as to liability. We therefore adopt that
memorandum of decision as the proper statement of the
relevant facts, issues and applicable law. See Tedesco v.
Agolli, Superior Court, judicial district of Waterbury,
Complex Litigation Docket, Docket No. CV-12-6016130-S (June
21, 2016) (reprinted at 182 Conn.App. 294). It would serve no
useful purpose for us to repeat the discussion contained
therein. See Seminole Realty, LLC v. Sekretaev, 162
Conn.App. 167, 169, 131 A.3d 753 (2015), cert. denied, 320
Conn. 922, 132 A.3d 1095 (2016).
judgment is affirmed and the case is remanded for the purpose
of setting a new sale date.
AGOLLI ET AL.[*]
to foreclose a mortgage on certain real prop- erty owned by
named defendant et al. Judgment for plaintiff as to
Court, Complex Litigation Docket at Waterbury File No.
filed June 21, 2016
an action to foreclose a mortgage covering several parcels of
real property located in Waterbury, Connecticut, each of
which is owned by the defendant Fikri Development, LLC
(Fikri). The properties at issue are: (1) 3743 East Main
Street; (2) 3496 East Main Street; (3) 51 Matteson Road; and
(4) 3514 Main Street. The defendant Resjimi Agolli (Agolli)
is currently the sole member of Fikri. The defendants assert
several special defenses to the foreclosure action. Trial was
conducted over the course of three days in May, 2016. The
court heard testimony from seven witnesses and admitted
numerous documents into evidence. Simultaneous trial briefs
were submitted on June 1, 2016. The court has considered the
testimony and evidence introduced, the arguments set forth in
the parties' memoranda, the authorities cited therein,
and renders this decision based thereupon. For the reasons
set forth below, judgment will enter in favor of the
plaintiff as to liability.
a case tried before a court, the trial judge is the sole
arbiter of the credibility of the witnesses and the weight to
be given specific testimony. . . . It is within the province
of the trial court, as the fact finder, to weigh the evidence
presented and determine the credibility and effect to be
given the evidence.'' (Citation omitted; internal
quotation marks omitted.) Cadle Co. v.
D'Addario, 268 Conn. 441, 462, 844 A.2d 836 (2004).
The court makes the following factual findings by a fair
preponderance of the evidence, unless otherwise indicated,
based upon the better, more credible evidence
came to the United States in 1967 from what is now Macedonia
as a young woman newly married to Fikri Agolli. She and her
husband settled in the Water-bury area where they raised
three children. Eventually, Agolli's husband owned and
operated a diner in Water-bury, at which Agolli sometimes
worked. As the children grew, they helped in the diner as
well. Ultimately, each of the children pursued careers of
their own. In 2006, Agolli's husband was diagnosed with
cancer, an illness to which he would eventually succumb.
Agolli could not run the diner on her own and so arranged to
sell it. At the time, there was an interested buyer for the
diner but his interest was contingent upon a zoning change
being made. The buyer paid Agolli $7500 per monthas
consideration for not selling the diner to someone else.
Ultimately, the putative purchaser did not obtain the zone
change and terminated the option to purchase. Thereafter,
Agolli located a buyer and sold the diner for $375, 000.
his life, Agolli's husband had purchased numerous parcels
of undeveloped property in the Waterbury area. After his
passing, Agolli became the owner of these parcels.
Antonios was a local mortgage broker who ran his own
business, Metro Mortgage. He also owned and operated The
Private Mortgage Fund, LLC (The PMF), which financed mortgage
loans. Fesnik Agolli (Nik), Agolli's son, worked for
Antonios' mortgage brokerage business for approximately
fourteen years. He is presently a police officer for the city
of Waterbury. During the time that Nik Agolli worked for
Metro Mortgage, Antonios became well known to and a friend of
the Agolli family. He would often accompany Nik Agolli to
Agolli's home for dinner. The Agollis liked and trusted
Antonios. In 2007, Antonios began discussions with Agolli
about developing her properties so that they would generate
cash flow for Agolli. Fikri was formed and Agolli
transferred all of her real estate holdings into Fikri, to
include her personal residence. Agolli was a 50 percent
member; Antonios' wife, Gina, was a 50 percent member;
and Antonios was made the manager.The arrangement called for
Antonios, as the manager, to develop the properties. The
operating agreement gave Antonios broad and largely
unfettered authority to act on behalf of Fikri.
2008 and 2010, Antonios borrowed hundreds of thousands of
dollars on behalf of Fikri, securing these loans with the
properties Agolli had transferred into Fikri. Some of these
loans were financed by the Angelo P. Tedesco Money Purchase
Pension Plan (ATMPPP). Angelo Tedesco was a local property
developer. He had a business relationship with Antonios, and
would, at times, provide the funds through which The PMF
extended loans. In 2008, Antonios arranged for The PMF to
loan Fikri $750, 000. This debt was secured by a mortgage on
the four properties at issue here, as well as Agolli's
personal residence locatedat 375 Maybrook Road, Waterbury,
Connecticut, and an undeveloped parcel of land located on
Austen Road in Waterbury, Connecticut. In 2010, Tedesco, as
Trustee of the ATMPPP, agreed to take an assignment of this
note and mortgage. In connection therewith, Agolli, on behalf
of Fikri, signed a Note and Mortgage Modification Agreement,
to include a new Promissory Note dated January 12, 2010
(exhibit B). This transaction closed on or about January 12,
2010. The Promissory Note contained a 10 percent interest
rate and a payment schedule of interest only for twelve
months with the principal due in full on January 12, 2011.
discernible progress was made in the development of the
properties. As a result, the properties did not generate any
cash flow with which to service the enormous debt which had
been taken on by Fikri. Fikri defaulted under the terms of
the January, 2010 Note.
service of a writ of summons and complaint filed September 3,
2010, Angelo Tedesco as Trustee of the ATMPPP commenced a
foreclosure action against Agolli and Fikri. Fikri and
Agolli were represented by Attorney Timothy Sullivan of
Mahaney, Geghan & Sullivan. Attorney Sullivan was a
childhood friend of Nik Agolli and had known the Agolli
family for many years. Nik Agolli asked Attorney Sullivan to
defend the foreclosure with the primary objective being the
securing and safeguarding of Agolli's personal residence
on May-brook Road in Waterbury, Connecticut.
it is not clear precisely when the relationship between
Agolli and Antonios soured, following the filing of the
foreclosure action, the determination was made to remove both
Joseph and Gina Antonios from any further involvement with
Fikri. Also during this time period, Agolli spoke directly
with Angelo Tedesco in an effort to resolve the foreclosure
and satisfy Fikri's debt to the ATMPPP. She testified
that she asked him whether he intended to leave her
‘‘out on the street'' with nothing.
Agolli wanted Tedesco to accept $500, 000 from the
anticipated sale of one of the parcels of property in full
satisfaction of Fikri's debt.
Sullivan eventually worked out a resolution of the
foreclosure action with Tedesco, who was represented by
Attorney Paul Margolis. The debt would be refinanced as
follows. Fikri would consummate the sale of property located
on Austen Road, Waterbury, Connecticut, from which $290, 000
would be paid to Tedesco to pay down the outstanding Fikri
debt. Fikri would sign a new Promissory Note in the reduced
amount of approximately $571, 000. The new Note would bear
interest at 5 percent, instead of the previous interest rate
of 10 percent. The new Note would be secured by the four
properties at issue here, but Agolli's personal residence
would no longer be on the mortgage, protecting her home in
the event of future default. ...