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CASSA318
16-12-2002, 09:55 PM
Edited by Jeff Ooi for text prominence and quoting of source for authenticity. Content 100% unchanged.

MALAYSIAKINI.COM
7:21pm Mon Dec 16th, 2002

<FONT SIZE="+1">Buyers sue developer over non-delivery of homes</FONT>
Arfa’eza A Aziz

<img src="http://www.malaysiakini.com/imagebank/storyimages/Rhythm-Avenue.jpg" align="left"> Fourteen buyers in the abandoned Rhythm Avenue project in USJ, Selangor, have filed a suit against the developer, its directors and the architect of the project, seeking to nullify the sale and purchase agreement and to obtain a full refund.

The suit which also named Affin Bank as one of the end-financiers of the project, was filed on Nov 5. Copies had been served on all four defendants named in it.

The defendants are developer Sanjung Utama Sdn Bhd, company directors Yap Kwee Huat and Yap Kwee Chai and the architect of the project, Goh Ray Den.

Lawyer Jaswint Singh from Messrs AJ, Ariffin, Yeo & Harpal, confirmed that his firm had filed the suit, adding that they had also filed a mareva injunction application to stop the defendants from dissipating their assets pending the disposal of the case.

No date has been fixed as the defendants have yet to file their defence.

Filed in batches

Jaswint informed malaysiakini today that the suit is the first among many from the 160 house purchasers whom his firm is representing.

<img src="http://www.usj.com.my/usjXpress/getdata.php3?table=usjXpress&id=304" align="left"> “We expect to file the suits in batches soon. We will also be adding some banks as co-defendants,” he said when contacted.

In the writ of summons, the buyers among others seek to terminate their sale and purchase agreements with full refund plus interest as the developers had failed to deliver their properties as promised.

Meanwhile, Consumers Association of Subang and Shah Alam (Cassa) president Jacob George has criticised the banks, both local and foreign, for threatening loan borrowers of the abandoned project.

Malaysiakini understands that more than 10 banks have given out loans to purchasers of the project.

Warning to banks

Jacob said today that the banks should stop threatening purchasers with property auction, blacklisting, referral to Bank Negara and bankruptcy, considering that the purchasers are victims of fraudulent conduct.

“We have advised the purchasers to lodge a police report against bank officers who had harassed them. We are warning the banks that if they continue with this unacceptable conduct, we would refer and report them to the Ministry of Finance and Bank Negara,” he said when contacted.

Jacob added that they are seriously considering launching a nationwide boycott of the banks if the harassment does not stop.

“They are not behaving like responsible financial institutions at all. They are behaving more like loan sharks. In fact, they also failed to perform their ‘duty of care’ as they had released 95 percent of the purchase price to the developer when only 65 percent of the work had been done,” he said.

Asked if the banks are aware of the problem, Jacob said the purchasers had met with the banks and briefed them on the matter; thus, the banks should not be chasing the purchasers to service their loans.

Rhythm Avenue is a mixed development project by Sanjung Utama. Several buyers were already apprehensive about the project when they were not given vacant possession of their properties in January as stipulated in their sale and purchase agreements.


SOURCE:
http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/200212160018591.php



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