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Stoumbos v. Kilimnik

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
988 F.2d 949 (1993)


On May 1, 1982, American Alloy Metals (AAM) purchased a business from Walter Kilimnik (defendant). As part of the transaction, Kilimnik retained a security interest in certain components of the business. Although the collateral was described in various ways in numerous documents, the language used was equivalent to the general and commonly employed description of inventory and equipment. The security agreement also referenced after-acquired collateral, but simultaneously included language granting Kilimnik a security interest in property described as “inventory . . . on hand at May 1, 1982.” In October 1985, AAM defaulted on its payments to Kilimnik. Kilimnik proceeded by seizing all inventory and equipment in AAM’s possession at the time of the default, including items that AAM acquired after May 1, 1982. Thereafter, AAM filed for bankruptcy. Zachary Stoumbos (plaintiff), AAM’s trustee, brought suit against Kilimnik, demanding the return of all inventory and equipment acquired by AAM after May 1, 1982. The bankruptcy court dismissed the case. The trustee appealed to the federal district court, which affirmed. The trustee appealed again, and Kilimnik cross-appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Fletcher, J.)

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