El Paso

Accountant: Late Dick Poe wanted stock transaction kept secret

Dick Poe's accountant testifies

EL PASO, Texas - Jurors in a civil case involving the estate of late El Paso auto dealer Dick Poe heard from the accountant who performed a stock issuance that seized ownership from Poe's eldest son.

Richard Poe is suing to regain control of his late father's three dealerships.

Anthony Bock, the longtime CPA for Dick Poe and Richard Poe, told the jury under oath Friday Dick Poe asked him not to tell his son Richard about the $3.2 million stock issuance, which happened just 10 days before Dick Poe's death.

"I don't know what motivated him to make that decision," Anthony Bock said while being questioned by the plaintiff's attorney Rob Millimet.

Millimet asked Bock while on the stand: "Dick Poe told you, 'Please don't tell Richard?'"

Bock answered: "That is correct."

Bock was named a trustee of Dick Poe estate and an executor of his will along with co-defendant Karen Castro, who is a long time Poe employee. She is also expected to take the stand at some point.

Richard Poe spent much of Wednesday and most of Thursday on the witness stand.

Bock was not only an accountant for Dick Poe for 30 years, he also did accounting work for Richard Poe for more than 20 years.

During opening statements, the defense attorney representing Dick Poe employees indicated the late auto dealer  requested the stock issuance because he believed his son was using drugs, specifically meth.

Bock said he did not know what motivated Dick Poe to make the decision to put Bock, longtime employee Karen Castro, and attorney Paul Sergent in charge of his estate and dealerships.

Richard Poe's attorneys maintain he should have been told about the issuance regardless of his father's wishes.

Attorney Rob Millimet asked Bock if he believed it was "Dick Poe's intent that his son Richard Poe operate the dealerships?"

"I will say yes," Bock answered.

Millimet further asked,"You will agree you are not qualified to operate a dealership?"

"Yes, I would agree," Millimet asked.

Millimet asked Bock if he had ever sold a car, hired a parts manager, service manager or sales manager.

"No, I have not," Bock answered.

Defense attorneys asked Richard Poe about his many businesses, including Worldcover and Dos Lunas Tequila. The defense claims Richard Poe lost more than $20 million dollars, possibly leading to his father's decision that he was unfit to run his dealerships

Richard Poe disputes that figure, although the defense showed a 2006 financial statement in which Richard Poe valued Dos Lunas, which eventually went under, at $20 million.

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