T. Boone Pickens Claims ‘Swift Boat’ Founder Owes Him Millions

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (CN) — Oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens sued a founder of Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, which attacked presidential candidate John Kerry’s war record, claiming William E. Franke refuses to pay a $3.1 million court award from a previous legal battle.

Pickens sued Franke in Dallas County in October 2013, alleging nonpayment of a business loan. The billionaire won the suit but claims in a federal complaint Tuesday in Alexandria  that Franke never paid up.

With interest, Pickens says, Franke owes him $4.5 million.

He claims in the lawsuit that Franke and his wife, Ruth, along with business associate-defendants John Shipley, David Weygandt and Quang Hien Ngo conspired to hide Franke’s assets by transferring stock in his companies and backdating documents.

“For the last few years, Franke has furiously engaged in a series of transactions to avoid paying his judgment,” Pickens says in the complaint. “He claims, without a hint of coherence, that these transactions are for ‘tax reasons.’ For a man with a modest income and double digit million dollar loss carry forwards, this is specious at best.”

Pickens claims Franke transferred his controlling stock in defendant companies WEF Family Limited Partnership, Golden Asia Capital LLC and Gannon Homes LLC, and that “Franke has historically (and fraudulently) backdated documents” to deceive collectors.

Pickens seeks $4.5 million plus costs of suit.

He is represented by James Hannon Jr. with Williams and Hannon, of Williamsburg, Va.

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