Mark Davidson came to the conclusion that "we all got screwed in this deal." It was past the two-year window to sue for changes to the trust, but Mark pressed Teeple Hall for a full accounting of the trust's finances.

There's an outside chance the Davidsons' lawsuit against Unkefer could result in a payoff from the trust to the brothers, Mark Davidson admits. But he and Harley say their overriding goal is to help the County Attorney's Office stick it to their ex-con stepfather.

"Harley and I don't want a dime of it," Mark maintains.

The Davidson brothers' professed loathing for Unkefer is difficult to fully comprehend, given their previous mutually beneficial relationship with him. One thing seems clear: If the brothers manage to knock the financial wind out of Unkefer, that's not what their mother would have wanted.


A year after his contribution to Republic Monetary Exchange, Unkefer signed an operating agreement with Clark in which he would receive a 30.4 percent ownership stake in the company. Unkefer's involvement was hidden behind a company called Occidental Resources Group.

That company, known as ORG, is owned by Occidental Management, managed by San Diego lawyer Todd Hall. Occidental Management, in turn, is owned by Mango Trust.

As they planned, Unkefer and Clark talked of how Unkefer would "own nothing but control everything," according to Unkefer's deposition testimony.

Under that plan, Unkefer's creditors from long ago would have a tough time trying to lay claim to any part of the gold firm.

The business relationship worked fine for a while. The capital investment allowed Jim Clark to launch the company. Unkefer helped with employee matters, gave occasional pep talks to the sales crew, and attended Republic Christmas parties.

However, e-mails between attorney Grant Teeple and Jim Clark in November 2010 suggest that Teeple worried that the "internal controls" for accounting used by Republic at the time weren't cutting it.

Teeple said he needed the passwords to accounting software used by Republic, but he was rebuffed by John Jakubczyk, Clark's lawyer.

By early 2011, representatives of the Teeple Hall firm demanded complete access to the company's books. Clark felt this would allow them access to company secrets, including lists of clients who themselves were like gold.

The tension grew by January, when Unkefer sent Clark an e-mail telling him to take Teeple's demands for information seriously.

"The important thing to remember here is that the trust is truly not owned or controlled by me," Unkefer reminded Clark.

Then, in March 2011, Unkefer — saying he was in the midst of a 50-city tour for XanGo — told Clark in an e-mail that he had just learned that Grant Teeple intended to sue Republic and that "there is not much that I can do about this."

Clark wrote back, "Don't play coy with me," adding that the pending lawsuit should be no surprise to Unkefer. Clark told Unkefer he'd hoped to buy out Unkefer because "this is obviously not working out for either of us."

Clark went on to say that Republic had spent "tens of thousands of dollars on reputation management" as a result of the "pesky" July 2010 New Times article. But, Clark said, the more the company grows, "the more you will be linked to it. It's unfortunate, but that's the way it is. We know for a fact it's cost us several million dollars in business already."

Clark warned that Teeple Hall could obtain tax returns and some financial info, but that no confidential client information would be delivered.

Given that information, Clark's position was that someone could steal away Republic's customers and that Republic could be sued by customers who felt their privacy had been violated.

Clark concluded the terse e-mail with, "Sherman, we've known each other for 38 years. You and I need to meet and work out a reasonable resolution . . . fair enough?"

Apparently not.

The lawsuit filed in May 2011 alleged that ORG was forced to pay taxes because of its investment in Republic yet didn't get its proper profit distribution. ORG demanded that Republic turn over all its financial data, which ORG said it had a right to look at under terms of the Republic operating agreement signed by Clark and Unkefer.

Unkefer claimed in his deposition that he had absolutely nothing to do with the lawsuit — it was ORG's doing.

Clark filed a counterclaim, saying he'd been the victim of misrepresentation and breach of contract. Instead of going into business with his old friend, he said he unknowingly had gone into business with two lawyers he'd never met — Teeple and Hall.

Yet Clark had told New Times in 2010 that Unkefer was not a partner of Republic's — he insisted the partner was the trust of Unkefer's deceased wife, Sharon.

In a more recent interview, Clark said he believed Unkefer controls Sharon's trust. Therefore, he argued, Unkefer was his actual partner.

And 'round they went.


Unkefer is cagey and arrogant in his deposition for the lawsuit, leading to some farcical moments.

Asked about his history, Unkefer says he's a "dropout like Bill Gates."

Unkefer downplays his leadership role with XanGo, denying he ever was a XanGo distributor.

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6 comments
rawilson
rawilson

I knew the Unkefers back in their Pre Paid Legal days.  Smooth talker, that Unkefer.  His wife Sharon was a jewel.  It makes me sick to my stomach to realize he was hiding behind her all along.  She was a hard worker, worked her fingers to the bone for that man.  I know for a fact that her four sons were her top priority and she would do anything for them. If she knew what was going on now... that her "beloved" husband was screwing over her four sons and her grandchildren, AND that he is literally screwing his first born son's wife, the mother of his own grandchildren, who was also the Unkefer's secretary... Oh my God.  This man is the scum of the earth. The BIGGEST hypocrite of them all. Go get him, Davidsons! 

shadeaur14
shadeaur14

I would like to bone that whore Laudry

larry
larry

I think a guy who didles his sons ex wife has got to be a real sleazeball.

fairymagic13
fairymagic13

I've worked in law firms for 24 years and this kind of crap happens ALL THE TIME!!!  I don't mind when the "job creators" do this stuff to each other, but when they hurt other people who aren't "job creators" I think they should be held against a wall and each of their victims should get to knee them in the balls.  There's a State of Arizona Bar Association board which deals with regulation of the lawyers - lawyers who are supposed to tell their clients when something is illegal - and that board doesn't seem to be getting the point across to the attorneys in this case that they're going to be held responsible for their inaction and even aiding the commission of white collar crimes.  

 

shadeaur14
shadeaur14

@fairymagic13 This kind of shit started once that Kenyan took office. No leadership at the top....

 
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