As the trial approaches in the protracted divorce between Michael Brown and his estranged fourth wife, the disgraced former hand surgeon, who is also in bankruptcy, has gone to court to protest the sale of his Texas ranch.
In an emergency motion filed Sept. 3 in Florida's 11th Judicial Circuit Court, Brown stated that defendants in his latest lawsuit had closed on the sale of the Texas ranch on Aug. 29 "without any authority."
According to this new piece of litigation, Brown is suing David L. Grange, who was named in March as the Chief Restructuring Officer overseeing Brown's businesses as part of a bankruptcy case, and Osprey Global Solutions, LLC, the company Grange heads as its president.
Under terms of a March 9 agreement, Grange was retained by the Brown Entities to administer Brown's financial affairs, including his legal obligations in the bankruptcy case and divorce from Rachel Brown.
In response to the restructuring officer's request, Brown agreed in late June to the sale of 14 "luxury collectible cars" and one motorcycle to cover the company payroll and other expenses, including $90,000 for Brown's June and July living expenses, court documents state.
The divorce is scheduled for trial Sept. 30 in Harris County's 309th State District Court.
One reason that Brown contends the agreement with Grange is not binding is that Rachel Brown never signed it.
The ranch in question appears to be a 122-acre parcel on FM 132 in Leon County. The Leon County Appraisal District lists Michael Glyn Brown Trustee as both the existing owner and previous owner, according to online records.
Regarding the ranch, Brown's motion states that the defendants had previously sold off exotic animals on the ranch, also without notice or authority.
Grange and Osprey did not provide any advance notice of the ranch sale and, at the time the motion was filed, had not provided Brown an accounting of the sale proceeds, the motion stated.
"Besides having tremendous sentimental value to the plaintiff and his family, the ranch stood to provide collateral for much needed financing for the plaintiff's businesses, which the defendants have all but ruined," the motion stated.
In the motion, Brown said the ranch sale proceeds should be accounted for and deposited into an account in the court's jurisdiction.
In November 2011, four people were arrested after an employee at Brown's ranch found marijuana plants on about an acre of the Leon County property, authorities said at the time.
Most of the marijuana stalks were on plots adjacent to Brown's property, while only a few plants were on Brown's land in a remote area near the Navasota River, his attorney said when the plants were discovered.
Brown was not a suspect in the marijuana case, the attorney said.