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Chapter 7 case against Home Line Inds. dismissed

Heath E. Combs, Powell Slaughter -- Furniture Today, July 6, 2011

PHILADELPHIA — A U.S. Bankruptcy Court here has dismissed an involuntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition against defunct manufacturer and importer Home Line Inds.

The company, more than four decades old, began liquidating inventory this spring and abruptly announced plans not to exhibit in High Point in April. It also began quietly winding down operations at an upholstery manufacturing facility it leased in Asheboro, N.C., which has closed.

In April, furniture logistics provider Global Link Logistics filed a suit against the Home Line alleging theft of furniture from shipping containers. Furniture/Today reported on the case at the time.

 Global Link was holding the containers for Home Line and an affiliate business MIE international at the trucking yard of Galasso Trucking. Home Line had not paid its source factories and the logistics provider was obligated to hold them, officials with Global Link said.

"It is our strict company policy to never ever release containers to the importer without authorization from the seller," said Hessel Verhage, president of Global Link.

Home Line made a side arrangement with Galasso to take the containers but promised they would not open them until the items were paid for, a deal done without Global Link's knowledge, Verhage said.

Later that month, Global Link filed a motion with two other creditors to force Home Line into involuntary bankruptcy. In early May, Home Line announced plans to close.

The initial Chapter 7 involuntary bankruptcy petition was for claims totaling $854,405. It was filed by Global Link Logistics for $544,806, Max Point Design, based in Malaysia, for $180,688, and TLC Consultants of Vietnam, for $133,911.

Global Link filed an order to withdraw the case in May after it and a trucking company also involved in the case settled their claims against Home Line.

The remaining creditors, Max Point and TLC, moved to keep the case open against Home Line, but on June 24 withdrew their motion. The bankruptcy court case docket indicated that the motion to drop the case last week was unopposed.

Home Line/MIE indicated in court documents that it had secured loan obligations totaling at least $19 million with PNC Bank dating from June of last year.

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