Bradley owes county taxes on BayBees property

January 29, 2010

It may be the least of his worries, but Lewes pediatrician Dr. Earl Bradley also owes back taxes to Sussex County for his BayBees Pediatrics office on Route 1. According to public county records, Bradley owed $535.50 in taxes on the office property.

Bradley had until Sept. 30 to pay his 2009 tax bill, but county records show those taxes are still unpaid. There is a 1.5 percent penalty per month on the unpaid balance. The tax bill is based on the assessed value of the property – $15,850. For tax purposes, the total value of the property is valued at $31,700 with a land value of $7,200 and $24,500 for the buildings.

The Delaware Department of Justice recently filed a civil racketeering suit against Bradley to preserve his assets and ultimately seize them should Bradley be ordered to compensate his alleged victims. Attorney General Beau Biden has said that Bradley’s assets were “wide-ranging” but has not commented further on what assets Bradley may have. He bought the BayBees property nearly eight years prior to his Dec. 16, arrest on child rape and exploitation charges. Bradley’s limited liability corporation – Bradley Family LLC – purchased the property for $240,000 Dec. 21, 2001.

Sussex County Recorder of Deeds John Brady said when a tax bill is unpaid, the county puts a tax lien on the property. As of Sept. 30, 2009, the county automatically put a lien on the BayBees property. He said the lien must be satisfied before the property is conveyed to a new owner. Brady said there are a number of ways the property can be conveyed, such as a sale of the property for the value of unpaid taxes, a situation similar to a sheriff’s sale.

One way or another, the county will be able to collect the unpaid taxes. Brady said a likely course of action is a lis pendens. Under this scenario, the state and attorneys filing suit will file a notice of legal proceedings with the recorder of deeds stating that Bradley’s assets are subject to claims by the state and Bradley’s alleged victims. Bradley’s other local property was his home in Lewes, which for tax purposes has a land value of $11,400 and a total value of $22,500. Bradley purchased the home sometime prior to 1998. Bradley also leased an office in Milford, which is currently empty.

The property values are based on a 1974 assessment. The assessed value may not include any recent improvements to the property. When compared to other properties in the area, the BayBees land, not including the buildings, is estimated to be worth between $400,000 and $500,000.

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