Paso Robles Pasolivo olive ranch sold
November 16, 2012
A Newport Beach family has purchased the Pasolivo olive oil business and its surrounding 131 ranch in Paso Robles, with the proceeds slated to help pay the victims of hard money lenders Karen Guth and Joshua Yaguda. [Tribune]
Though the purchase price is currently undisclosed, in 2011, the 131 acre ranch including three standalone homes, a studio apartment with a garage, a barn, an olive oil tasting room, a processing facility, and 34 acres of olive trees was listed for sale at $3.2 million.
Estate Financial Inc. owners Guth and her son Yaguda defrauded more than 3,000 investors out of more than $300 million in a Ponzi scheme. The fraud was uncovered, the two were arrested, eventually plead guilty and the court ordered their personal assets sold to help reimburse their victims.
In September 2011, the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s office said it was close to finalizing a deal to sell the Pasolivo Ranch property and that the bidding was closed to new bidders. The proposed sale angered some investors and potential buyers who said the prosecutor’s office had approved a secret process that kept potential buyers from learning about the sale or bidding up the price of the property.
Deputy District Attorney Steve von Dohlen said he chose not to advertise the sale of the property because advertising would be costly for the investors. Instead, von Dohlen said, he and the receiver for the property chosen by the district attorney’s office, used e-mails and telephone calls to notify potential buyers.
However, California law requires openness in the sale of seized property including mailing letters to all interested parties and advertising in a paper of record.
Shortly after CalCoastNews uncovered the private sale, the proposed sale was stopped and the property was listed with Nancy McWhorter of Keller Williams Realty for $3.2 million.
Von Dohlen told the Tribune that once the remaining assets have been liquidated — including Guth’s portion of a Ninth Street office building in Paso Robles and personal property such as vehicles and household items— the money will be distributed to the victims.