Tribeca’s bizarre struggle with sponsor Lawrence Omansky



Lawrence Omansky and 160 Chambers Street (Facebook, Google Maps)

Lawrence Omansky and 160 Chambers Street (Facebook, Google Maps)

Damn, Omani.

Shareholders in the famed cooperative building in Tribeca, home to controversial lawyer Lawrence Omansky, say he borrowed millions of dollars using a commercial unit on the building’s ground floor as collateral.

The Omanksy deal has so damaged the building’s creditworthiness, 160 Chambers Street, that it cannot get a loan to renovate the roof, which has long been leaked to Omanksy’s top-floor apartment, the cooperative claims in the lawsuit.

“These mortgages and financial statements are currently burdening the building,” said the cooperative’s lawsuit filed last week. He asked the court to remove mortgages from the city register “so he could get a commercial loan and mortgage.”

The 72-year-old Omani and the cooperative used to be in conflict.

The Omani sponsored a refurbishment of the building in 1982, securing an apartment on the top floor and a 25-year “lease” for a commercial unit on the ground floor with rents “well below market”, according to the building’s complaint.

Omani first drew unwanted attention to 160 Chambers in 2003 when he reportedly tied and gagged his business partner is under the threat of a knife over a real estate dispute, leaving the partner under the floorboards of his duplex in a building. Although the investigation confirmed the claims of the Omani partner who survived, the prosecutor’s office ultimately dropped the kidnapping charges

A year after the grizzly incident and with a clean record, Omanski received a $ 1 million loan, pledging the commercial space of the building as collateral. He raised another $ 4.8 million in 2008 when he used a company named after his wife to borrow funds, again backed by a unit on the ground floor, according to commercial and property records.

That same year, Oman sued the cooperative to force it to install an elevator (after 26 years, climbing to the top floor appears to have become more difficult). In 2009, he stepped up the pressure by refusing to pay general fees, for which they tried to evict him from the building. There was no eviction or lift.

Omani, a criminal defense lawyer, remained largely out of sight until 2015 when he discovered protect manager of topless women known as “painted ladies” in Times Square.

Meanwhile, another dispute erupted between Oman and his residence over who actually owned the commercial lease on the ground floor after its 25-year term expired in 2008.

In 2017 alone, a court ruled that Oman was too slow to renew the lease, restoring ownership of the commercial unit to the building and questioning whether the area could be a collateral for the nearly $ 6 million that Oman had borrowed against it.

While Oman signed both loan documents – one loaned him just over $ 1 million and the other $ 4.8 million – the larger loan was borrowed by a company bearing the name of Oman’s wife. what loan does not appear to contain a “good guy guarantee” that would make Omani personally liable for the loan.

Omani lenders seem branch private lending arm CenterSquare, which declined to comment; and a corporation registered in the Bahamas as Coronation International, which could not be contacted. Neither side has sued Oman.

A lawyer representing the cooperative in its efforts to remove loans from city archives declined to comment on the trial. The Omani, who is not featured in the lawsuit, did not respond to a request for comment.

The proceeds from Omanski’s loan could have gone towards the purchase of at least two condominium units at 49 Warren Street for his wife’s bed and breakfast, according to property records, although at least one of these units appears to have been sold in 2019 by more than $ 3 million.


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