Auction at Kangaroo Court: Tax office cashes, buyer does brisk businessPOSTED: 10/5/15 1:31 PM
St. Maarten – Bargain Hunters came down on the former Kangaroo Court in the Hendrik Straat across from the courthouse Friday morning for an auction of all of its furnishings at the orders of the tax inspectorate. Tax marshal David Antoine supervised the procedures.
Potential buyers cold inspect the goods for sale one hour before the auction that began shortly after 10 a.m. Antoine explained the procedures and made sure everyone understood: “If you buy something for $300 and you are unable to pay, we will sell it at the next auction. If we then only get $200, we will come after you for those one hundred dollars,” he warned.
While auctions on behalf of the tax inspectorate usually have a strong likeness to a funeral, this time the atmosphere was light and everybody was in good spirits (no pun intended).
The tax marshal began the auction by offering everything for $9,000. There were no takers, so then the offer went down to $8,500. Again, nobody was biting, but shortly afterwards, an American restaurant owner bought the whole lot for $8,300. He went to the tax inspectorate’s cashier on the spot to pay for his purchase in cash.
Immediately afterwards, the place turned into a Middle East bazaar, because there were still plenty of interested buyers for parts of the inventory. Tables, chairs, ovens, grills – the new owners were not short of clients and cash changed hands at lightning speed.
The owners of the real estate Norman and Sue Wathey intend to reopen the establishment in the near future.