EL PASO, Texas - An auction by the El Paso County Sheriff's Office to sell eleven properties owned by El Paso businessman Billy Abraham was halted after Abraham said he filed for bankruptcy.
Abraham told ABC-7 he has no comment on the matter, but said he planned on releasing a statement.
The El Paso Inc. reported that among the 11 properties, six of them are downtown including: the Toltec Building at 717 East San Antonio, the Caples building at 300 East San Antonio, the Newberry Building at 201 North Stanton, and the former Chinese laundry at 212 West Overland.
Steve Fischer was at the auction and said he's disappointed with the outcome.
SLIDESHOW: Properties owned by Billy Abraham
"There was one property I was interested in buying, plus I wanted to see what happened," Fischer said. "I love this city, and I want to see some people buy some of these buildings that might fix them up."
The auction was going to be held to satisfy a $1,035,347 debt Abraham owed to the late Juan Gabriel's son, Ivan Aguilera.
The El Paso Inc. reported in July of last year, a Florida court ruled in favor of Aguilera after Aguilera claimed Abraham never paid his father for a concert at the Don Haskins Center in 2015.
In November ABC-7 reported that Abraham claimed a deal to settle the debt was 'imminent.'
ABC-7 reached out to Aguilera's attorney Michael Shane. Shane said that negotiations on that settlement fell through. Shane said his client is disappointed, but they expected Abraham was likely going to file for bankruptcy.
ABC-7 obtained the bankruptcy filing. It states Abraham filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The documents state Abraham's assets, as well as his liabilities, are estimated to be worth $1 million and $10 million.
"Chapter 11 is the reorganization bankruptcy code, and it allows businesses and individuals to restructure their financial affairs." former bankruptcy attorney Andy Krafsur said. "The bankruptcy makes it more likely that some, or all the properties, are ultimately going to be sold to pay creditors. He loses a little bit of control."
The case will now make its way through the bankruptcy court rather than the civil court.
"It's really sad that he would do this at the last minute. He just likes to stick his fingers in the nose of the people of El Paso. He could've done this a month ago. He could have done this a week ago," Fischer said.