Tucker Carlson’s News Outlet Sues D.C. Building Owner To Avoid Tax Increase
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The Daily Caller, the conservative news outlet co-founded by Fox News host Tucker Carlson, is involved in a legal dispute over a D.C. building sale.
BOHIO7 LLC, an affiliate of The Daily Caller, filed a lawsuit this month against the owner of 1737 H St. NW for failing to close on the sale of the building before D.C.'s commercial real estate tax increase went into effect.
The news outlet, which currently is headquartered at 1920 L St. NW, entered into an agreement Sept. 3 to buy the vacant four-story office building for $8M from 1737 H Street LLC, the lawsuit says.
The defendant, 1737 H Street LLC, is a McLean, Virginia-based entity. The lawsuit says the entity's sole member is Bermudan company Aeolos Investments Limited. Deed records show the McLean-based entity is managed by Charis Lapas and acquired the building for $7.5M in 2017.
The parties agreed to close the sale before Oct. 1, in order to avoid D.C.'s tax increase on commercial property sales that went into effect that day, the lawsuit said. They were not the only ones looking to avoid the increase, as a flurry of sales totaling over $1B closed in the final days of September.
But the lawsuit said the seller failed to execute the deed transfer in time to avoid the tax increase, which hiked the rate from 2.9% to 5%. The increase would add $96K in costs for the buyer, the lawsuit says.
The lawsuit, first reported on Twitter by WAMU's Martin Austermuhle, is asking the court to order the seller to transfer the property's deed and reduce the purchase price to negate the tax increase. It also seeks to recover attorneys' fees. Tenenbaum & Saas attorney Bradshaw Rost is representing the Daily Caller affiliate in the suit.
The Daily Caller is planning to relocate its office from L Street to the 1737 H building once it completes the acquisition, Rost told Bisnow.
The building sits near the corner of 18th and H streets NW, one block from the Farragut West Metro station. A 2019 brochure marketing the property for sale lists Cushman & Wakefield's Mark Wooters and Aaron Pomerantz as the seller's representatives. It says the 20K SF building was constructed in 1905 and was renovated in 2001.