John D. Stanton III was jailed last year for tax evasion, the Tampa Bay Times reports. Former wife Susan Stanton sued him for $13 million in unpaid child support and alimony.
But 64 year-old Stanton now claims their marriage and subsequent divorce settlement were both void as he was still married to his former wife Susanne at the time of his second marriage in 1998. Therefore his second wife’s financial claims should not be given any priority in bankruptcy proceedings, he declared. Normally, child support and similar claims are considered ‘priority’ unsecured loans if a person is entering bankruptcy, and only secured loans such as mortgages are given a higher priority for payment.
In the new court documents, Stanton’s attorney, Paul DeCailley, declared:
“John Stanton was still married to his first wife at the time he was purported to have married Susan Stanton.”
However, a formal charge of bigamy is unlikely, DeCailley claimed, as Stanton is already in jail.
Tod Foster, an attorney representing creditor Renegade Consulting in the bankruptcy proceedings against Stanton, described the bigamy claims as “new information”.
“We’re going to be filing a supplemental motion for authority to inquire into this matter.”
Photo by Alan Cleaver via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence