Investment nightmare not over for NFL player

Jul 17, 2011 @ 12:01 am

By Bruce Kelly

A lawsuit by an NFL player against his investment advisers that was settled months ago has come back to life.

A federal judge has issued an arrest warrant for a businessman associated with the two financial advisers named in the suit.

On June 22, Judge Lance M. Africk of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana issued an arrest warrant for Bryce Karl, who worked with advisers Jason Jernigan and Michael Rowan. Mr. Karl was named in the original March 2010 complaint filed by San Diego Chargers wide receiver Craig “Buster” Davis, who sued the three over failed investments in airplane hangars.

The parties to the action agreed to a compromise in February, according to court papers. The suit was reopened last month, however, with Mr. Davis requesting an appearance by Mr. Karl in court.

According to court documents, Mr. Karl failed to comply with the earlier settlement agreement.

Separately, Mr. Africk ordered Mr. Karl to pay Mr. Davis $400,000.

The football player met Mr. Rowan and Mr. Jernigan in 2007. They, in turn, introduced him to Mr. Karl, according to the lawsuit.

After that introduction, Mr. Karl solicited the investment in Teton Air Ranch LLC, according to the lawsuit.

HANGAR STAKE

Teton Air Ranch was a deal to develop property in Idaho in order to sell or lease airplane hangars, according to the lawsuit.

Don Rouzan, listed as Mr. Karl's attorney in the case, said: “We don't have any comment on those matters at this time.”

Mr. Karl, whose businesses attracted a number of NFL players, said last year that he intended to pay the players their money back, according to the SportsBusiness Journal.

“I am a very hardworking, honest businessman who is trying to make a buck, and I have done a good job of managing two companies through the worst economic downturn we have seen,” he said, according to the SportsBusiness Journal.

Mr. Rowan founded Capital Management Group Wealth Advisors Inc., an investment firm located in High Point, N.C. Mr. Jernigan is a partner there.

The pair had been sued by other NFL players over the illiquid investments.

Alex Brown, defensive end for the New Orleans Saints, last September sued the two and Capital Management for almost $20 million in damages. The status of that suit isn't clear.

George Jeter, a spokesman for the North Carolina Securities Division, declined to comment about a potential open case involving Capital Management.

Harry Rosenberg, an attorney for Mr. Rowan with Phelps Dunbar LLP, wasn't immediately available to comment.

Andrew Lee, an attorney for Mr. Jernigan with Jones Walker, didn't immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

E-mail Bruce Kelly at bkelly@investmentnews.com.

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