The owners of the old Asiana building in downtown Frederick, including landlord Duk Hee Ro, successfully sued a contractor over deficient alarm and sprinkler system work, but have had difficulty collecting, according to court documents.
Julia and James Properties LLC, which owns the property at 123 N. Market St., won a summary judgment of about $71,600 on April 27 in Frederick County Circuit Court.
B.R.S. Alarm Inc. and Bong Rae Suh were ordered to pay the amount, but on June 20, Julia and James Properties requested a court hearing to compel the defendants to pay, claiming they had not made any payments.
Julia and James Properties, owned by Duk and Myung Ro, accused B.R.S. Alarm and Suh of not completing agreed upon work to the sprinkler and alarm system.
The Ros paid $35,000 for the electrical and alarm work and $71,000 for the sprinkler system work, according to Myung Ro’s affidavit and a 2014 contract.
Only the electrical work on the second and third floors of the old Asiana building passed inspection, according to the affidavit. That made up about a quarter of the building’s square footage.
Suh, in a phone interview last week, said he was unable to pay, but would do so when the job is finished.
Suh said he can complete his electrical work when the sprinkler job is complete. The sprinklers are being installed by a different company, he said.
He has done several jobs for Julia and James, and they continue to work together, according to Suh.
Most recently, in March, Suh submitted a permit application for electrical work at 300 N. Market St., another of the Ros’ properties, according to the city’s online permit portal.
The permit was approved, but the work has not been completed and no final inspection done, city permit records show.
Suh said that Myung Ro told him he would not pursue the lawsuit at the time he agreed to take on additional work for the property owners. That was also why Suh dismissed his attorney, Jonathan Ahn, in January, he said.
“Dr. Ro, he lied,” Suh said Thursday in a phone interview.
At the Asiana building, a total of 10 permits under Suh’s name were approved in June and July of 2014 for electrical and fire alarm detection work at the property, according to the city’s online database of permits.
Five of those permits are listed as voided, meaning the applications for the work were essentially canceled, according to Todd Himes, city building manager. The city has not received new permit applications for that work, Himes said in a phone interview Thursday.
The other five permits, for fire alarm detection in four apartment units and the first floor commercial space, remain open and active, but have not received final inspection. Those permits expire July 24 in conjunction with the main building renovation permits.
As of Thursday, the property owners had not submitted a request to extend the permits, Himes said.
The court complaint noted that Suh is not a licensed contractor.
However, online records with the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation list Suh as a licensed master electrician. Todd Himes, the city building manager, also confirmed that Suh was licensed at the time he applied for work permits with the city in 2014.
The building and permits department checks all contractors who submit permit applications against the department’s listings. Suh’s applications would not have been approved if he was not licensed, Himes said.
Christopher Wampler, the attorney representing the Ros, of Wampler & Souder, did not return three phone calls for comment this week.