Appeals court upholds judgment against area real estate agent

·1 min read

Sep. 18—The state Superior Court upheld a more than $130,000 judgment against an area real estate agent relating to the sale of his company.

George Semian, former owner of Semian & Gress Real Estate, sought to overturn Lackawanna County Judge Thomas Munley's 2021 ruling ordering him to pay the money to the Realty Network Group for failing to disclose critical information when he sold his company to the firm in 2011.

Realty Network sought to recoup $101,206 it spent to rebrand the real estate company following Semian's 2011 arrest on charges that he stole money from his company's escrow account and wrote several bad checks.

The criminal charges were dropped after Semian repaid the victims.

Munley also ordered Semian to pay $12,100 for failing to disclose he had misappropriated the escrow funds and $17,000 in loans he owed to the company.

Semian's appeal focused on his claim Munley wrongly ruled in Realty Network's favor after Semian failed to timely reply to its demand he admit or deny he had stolen the money and engaged in other improper activity.

In upholding the ruling, a three-member panel of the Superior Court agreed with Munley that Semian had not provided any legally justifiable reason to explain his delay in filing the reply.

The court also rejected several other issues Semian raised, including a challenge to how the amount of damages was calculated.

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