CHARLESTON, W. Va. - West Virginia Attorney General Darrell McGraw won his case against a Mercer County asphalt paver nine years ago, but getting Huey Small to pay up has been the difficult part.
McGraw recently filed a Petition for Contempt against Small in Kanawha Circuit Court, and on Wednesday he agreed to begin making restitution payments.
Small will pay a total of $6,000 to customers who McGraw says were conned into paying too much for shoddy paving jobs.
The suit against Small was filed in 1997, when McGraw was receiving complaints that Small was preying on elderly victims who felt intimidated by his door-to-door tactics. Sometimes, McGraw says, Small would have men escort the customers to their banks to withdraw money or get a check cashed.
McGraw won the case a year later, and Small was ordered to pay $125,000 in restitution. After refusing to do so, contempt charges were filed against Small in July 2000.
McGraw had already seized Small's dump truck, pickup truck, asphalt roller and trailer, and the paver filed for bankruptcy. Small said he had a buyer lined up for his dump truck, but his bankruptcy judge would not allow the sale because he feared it would put Small back in business.
Afterward, Small did not attend the contempt proceedings, and was ordered jailed until he complied with the court's wishes. Still, he could not be located by police until May 2001, when he was uncovered in Princeton. He was jailed for eight months until he agreed to make monthly payments of $500 until the judgment was fulfilled.
McGraw said recently Small has not been making his payments, and his tab as of April $5,500. After McGraw filed more contempt charges, he came forward with that balance plus the $500 April payment.