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DEPARTMENT STATE v. JAMES E. BEWLEY (01/11/71)

decided: January 11, 1971.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, COMMISSION OF PROFESSIONAL AND OCCUPATIONAL AFFAIRS, STATE REAL ESTATE COMMISSION,
v.
JAMES E. BEWLEY



Appeal to the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County from the adjudication of the State Real Estate Commission. Appeal transferred September 1, 1970, to the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania.

COUNSEL

Frederick R. Taylor, with him Dechert, Price & Rhodes, for appellant.

Steven Kachmar, Assistant Attorney General, with him, Fred Speaker, Attorney General, for appellee.

President Judge Bowman, and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Manderino and Mencer. Opinion by President Judge Bowman.

Author: Bowman

[ 1 Pa. Commw. Page 87]

This appeal is from an adjudication of the State Real Estate Commission revoking appellant's license as a real estate broker. Appellant, James E. Bewley, challenges the revocation on two grounds: first, that the Commission's findings of fact do not support the conclusions of law upon which the revocation order was based, and second, that the Commission under the circumstances abused its discretion in revoking his license.

The Commission originally acted on the basis of a complaint submitted by Alice P. Graham, a client of the appellant. The complaint set forth the detailed circumstances of an unsuccessful real estate transaction in which appellant acted as agent for Mrs. Graham. The sale was not consummated. Mrs. Graham charged in her complaint that appellant actively used deceptive tactics to reduce her profit from the sale, to keep her ignorant of various material terms of the agreement of sale, and generally to have conducted his real estate business in a manner contrary to the explicit provisions of the Real Estate Brokers' License Act of May 1, 1929, P.L. 1216, as amended, 63 P.S. 431.

After the issuance of a Citation a hearing was held in accordance with Section 10(b) of the Act. Thereafter, the Commission made specific findings of fact based upon the testimony and evidence admitted at the hearing. In addition to finding that the procedural

[ 1 Pa. Commw. Page 88]

    elements of due process had been met with respect to appellant's rights, the Commission made the following findings of fact:

". . . .

6. In listing the property with respondent, complainant advised him that she wanted $12,500.00 for the aforesaid property.

7. Respondent advised complainant that he had a buyer who would pay $12,000.00 for the property.

8. Respondent produced an agreement for signature by complainant dated May 12, 1966, which provided among other things for a purchase price of $12,000.00.

9. Respondent also produced an agreement for signature by complainant which was a blank but which Respondent was to fill in showing a consideration of $12,800.00 for the sale of the aforesaid property.

10. The agreement referred to in paragraph 8 above contained no reference to the amount of a mortgage, but the agreement referred to in paragraph 9 above, indicated a mortgage of $12,600.00.

11. The agreement specifying $12,800.00 as the purchase price, was to enable the purchaser to procure $800.00 to complete the purchase.

12. The $12,800.00 designated as the purchase price, was an inflated price to enable buyer to procure a mortgage of ...


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