Court of Appeals of Texas, Fifth District, Dallas
Appeal from the 162nd Judicial District Court Dallas County,
Texas Trial Court Cause No. TX-15-02015
Justices Bridges, Partida-Kipness, and Carlyle
L. CARLYLE JUSTICE
Investments, L.P. appeals an adverse judgment for delinquent
business personal property taxes. In five issues on appeal,
MEI contends (1) the trial court erred by admitting an
affidavit of MEI's principal into evidence and by
applying the presumption in Texas Property Tax Code section
33.47(a) against MEI, and (2) the evidence is legally and
factually insufficient to support the trial court's
judgment. We affirm.
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL CONTEXT
the Taxing Authorities, filed this lawsuit in October 2015
against "Public Auto Sales, Inc. D/B/A Public Autos,
Ltd., A/K/A Public Auto Sales," seeking to recover
delinquent 2014 taxes due on business personal property. They
attached a "delinquent tax statement," bearing the
heading "Public Auto Sales Inc, 925 S Buckner Blvd,
Dallas, TX 75217-4506" and listing taxes on
"Personal Property Public Autos Ltd 925 S. Buckner
2017, the Taxing Authorities filed a first amended petition
adding MEI as a defendant and asserting an additional claim
for unpaid 2015 taxes on the same property. MEI filed a
general denial answer and a motion for summary judgment,
which the court denied. The evidence attached to MEI's
summary judgment motion included an affidavit of Hussein K.
Mahrouq, the "managing member of the general partner of
MEI." In his affidavit, Mahrouq stated in part:
3. I was familiar with an automobile business which had
existed for many years in
Dallas known as Public Auto Sales ("Public Auto").
. . .
. . . .
7. MEI purchased the following assets of Public Auto:
a. Real property with the address of 908 S. Buckner Blvd,
Dallas, Texas. A true and correct copy of the February 3,
2015 contract for this property is attached hereto as Exhibit
b. Real property with the address of 905, 915 and 925 S.
Buckner Blvd, Dallas, Texas, as well as certain machinery,
office equipment and service vehicles described on Exhibit D
to the contract and intellectual property rights described on
an Addendum to the contract. A true and correct copy of the
March 25, 2015 contract for this property is attached hereto
as Exhibit "2."
contract attached to Mahrouq's affidavit as an exhibit
described the seller as "Public Autos Sales Ltd."
at "925 S. Buckner Blvd., Dallas, Texas 75217." The
"Addendum" to that contract stated in part:
Property address or description: 905, 915, 925, S. BUCKNER
BLVD., DALLAS, TX 75217 Seller has been operating an
automobile sales and financing enterprise ("the
Business") on the premises the subject of this
Commercial Contract of Sale. In conjunction herewith, and as
an integral part hereof, the following assets of the Business
are included in the contemplated purchase and shall be
conveyed by Seller to Purchaser at closing:
A. All right, title and interest in and to the goodwill of