Herb Chambers Jaguar Land Rover in Allston has sued a Rhode Island man who he claims tried to wrangle a 2022 Range Rover Sport for free by filing bogus liens with the state that not only wastes his time, but casts a cloud over its fundraising work.
In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Boston, the dealership alleges Derric Marcell Thompson of Woonsocket originally agreed online with a salesperson at the dealership to purchase the vehicle for $147,497.40 in January.
But after Thompson failed to transfer the money to a dealership account, he began demanding the car anyway, filing various demands and demands, including emailing a copy of a purported certificate of deposit backed by “THREE QUINTILLION, FIVE HUNDRED QUADRILLION” dollars in debt against Chambers, which he signed and thumbprints. The purported certificate is part of a long letter, to which he affixed a 1945 2-cent stamp on each page showing FDR and his winter retreat in Warm Springs. Thompson reportedly claimed that Chambers’ mere acceptance of his original request meant the company had agreed to “a common law contract between us under the Postal Rule” to give him the SUV.
The complaint continues that:
The … letter ends with the threat to create a “claim of lien” against each of Chambers’ business associates addressed in the letterhead and Chambers” and to file a financing statement against you each, supporting my privilege as I deem necessary.” The letter states that Chambers had “no right of action or remedy in any court action, action at equity or admiralty or any other statute here written or implied against me or my documents.”
The letter included a rambling speech about the Uniform Commercial Code.
On Feb. 2, Herb Chambers says, Thompson filed Form UCC-1 with the Massachusetts Secretary of State’s office, claiming ownership of 27 cars in the dealership’s inventory, worth about $2.7 millions of dollars. He told the dealer it was worth it to simply give him the Land Rover he wanted in exchange for the discharge of the “debt”, the complaint continues.
The dealership filed its own UCC form with Massachusetts, claiming that Thompson’s UCC form was bogus. When he sent a letter to Thompson asking him to tell Massachusetts he had no such privilege, he replied that he had filed a Form 1099 with the IRS stating that he was signing more than 1 $.4 million to Herb Chambers – money that, if actually paid, the dealership would have to pay taxes on. He also threatened to sue the dealer in US tax court.
Thompson then demanded that Herb Chambers pay him $1 million in real money for copyright and trademark infringement – he claimed he had copyrighted and trademarked his name, that the rate in effect was $500,000 per use and that Chambers had used his name twice in his letter demanding that he strike all absurdity.
He later increased his claim to $1.5 million after Chambers’ lawyers wrote to him to give him one last chance to fix what he had done or they would see him in court.
In his lawsuit, the dealer asks a judge to declare all of his claims false and to order Thompson to reimburse him for all the legal trouble he had to go through to get him to leave him alone.
Defendant’s antics amount to a form of paper terrorism that jeopardizes Chambers’ inventory financing that is provided by a legitimate lender with valid and enforceable liens. The Chambers Funding Agreement requires Chambers not to use or authorize its inventory to secure any other funding instrument. Defendant’s false UCC-1 record creates the appearance of a breach of this duty and obscures Chambers’ title on its inventory.
A judge has scheduled a May 5 hearing on the dealer’s request for a preliminary injunction to have Thompson stop what he’s doing while the case is pending.