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Auction of ranchland delayed a second time

By Kevin Huelsmann, Jackson Hole Daily
December 03, 2012

Hundreds of acres of historic ranchland along Spring Gulch Road once again avoided auction on the steps of the county courthouse.

The former Hansen Ranch was scheduled to go before bidders today. It was the second time the property was cut from the schedule for foreclosure sales.

The auction was canceled Monday, said attorney Chris Hawks, who represents the property’s owner, Richard Fields. But the property was still listed on the sheriff’s office website Monday evening.

Hawks declined to provide any other details about the status of the property or whether it has any implications for a lawsuit between Fields and descendants of Cliff and Martha Hansen, who sold the property to Fields.

Members of the Hansen family claim Fields, a casino and resort developer, owes them nearly $52 million for the land. In October, Fields filed a lawsuit against the Hansen descendents in federal district court, claiming that they failed to hold up their end of the deal.

Fields’ attorney claims he bought the Hansen Ranch from the family in August 2006 for $69 million, according to the legal filing. Fields contends he has already paid the Hansen family nearly $34.3 million toward the purchase price, but stopped making payments because the previous owners hadn’t turned over a portion of property to him.

Shortly after Fields filed the lawsuit, the Hansen descendents moved forward with foreclosure proceedings.

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