HONOLULU (CN) – A woman claims she went heavily into debt after the National Korean War Museum and its alleged trustee Kyle Kopitke promised but failed to pay her $2.5 million to help with “land acquisition, fund raising, public relations, accounting, product development and overall coordination” for the proposed museum and nursing home for veterans.
Kopitke is denounced as a serial rogue on several Korean War veterans’ websites, including Korean-war-educator.org, and VAWatchdog.org.
Maria Abello and Teancum Inc. claim Kopitke promised her $300,000 a month for 8 months for her work, and claimed his project was “backed by various governments, including the United States government and the South Korean government, and that the museum and nursing home were endorsed by numerous state and federal politicians, including George W. Bush and prominent figures such as Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin.”
Relying on these representations, Abello says, she and Teancum “acquired land, raised funds, conducted public relations, performed accounting, developed the product and conducted overall coordination for the general development of the National Museum.”
Abello was the president of Teancum until it dissolved.
Abello claims she also borrowed $342,000 from “various lenders” and spent all of it, and her own money and Teancum’s on developing the museum and nursing homes.
She claims Kopitke and the museum never paid dime one on their contract. “As a direct and proximate result, the plaintiffs defaulted on some of the promissory notes they had given to the lenders, and suffered other damages,” Abello says.
The project failed, and Abello says she has suffered and continues to suffer “economic harm, promissory note liability, foreclosure of real property, severe emotional distress, harm to reputation and other damages”.
She seeks punitive damages for fraud, defamation, breach of contract, conversion, and misrepresentation. She is represented by Christopher Dias.