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WOODS v. SARETELLA (11/18/48)

November 18, 1948

WOODS, HOUSING EXPEDITER,
v.
SARETELLA



Author: Sparks

Before MAJOR, Chief Judge, and SPARKS, Circuit Judge, and LINDLEY, District Judge.

SPARKS, Circuit Judge.

The Housing Expediter appeals from a judgment of the District Court denying the injunction and rental refund sought by him for alleged violation of the Emergency Price Control Act of 1942, 50 U.S.C.A.Appendix, § 901 et seq., and the Housing and Rent Act of 1947, 50 U.S.C.A.Appendix, § 1881 et seq. The facts were stipulated, and from those facts the court concluded that there was no legal basis for a finding that appellees had violated or were threatening to violate the Acts or any of the regulations promulgated thereunder, hence no basis for the relief sought.

The controversy arose out of a transaction whereby appellee Saretella, wishing to purchase a three-story and basement residence for conversion into apartments, but unable to finance the purchase, obtained $6400 to be used in the purchase and conversion from five persons desirous of renting apartments in the converted building. In accordance with the plan adopted, the following amounts were placed in escrow by the parties named, to whom we shall hereafter refer, as indicted, in accordance with the space subsequently occupied by each:

$3000 by Carl Humes and Kenneth Cramer First Floor

2700 by Celia Wechter Second Floor

600 by Guy Munger Basement

100 by Edward Bezazian Third Floor

The deposits were conditioned upon the consummation of the purchase and remodeling of the building by Saretella, and leasing the various portions of it to the depositors as agreed upon for a term of three years in the case of the first three, and one year for the last named depositor. The plan was carried out; the property was purchased and remodeled; and approximately half of the $6400 deposited was used for remodeling and furnishing as follows:

$800 - First floor

1450 - Second floor

750 - Basement

230 - Third floor

The reconversion was completed on or about November 1, 1946, at which time all the tenants moved into their various apartments. The leases provided for ...


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