CNET Founder’s Bankruptcy Thrown Out Over Missed Deadline

Halsey Minor, the CNET Networks Inc. founder who filed for bankruptcy last month -- five years after selling the company for $1.8 billion -- lost access to court protection after missing a deadline for handing in documents.

The personal Chapter 7 bankruptcy case was dismissed yesterday by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Los Angeles over a “failure to file schedules, statements and/or plan,” according to an order posted in the online docket for the case. The documents include detailed lists of assets and explanations of a debtor’s state of affairs, which are required by judges.

The June 7 deadline was missed by a few days and the documents were filed this week, David Shemano, Minor’s lawyer with Peitzman Weg LLP in Los Angeles, said in an e-mail. Minor will seek to have the case reinstated, Shemano said, adding that such requests are routinely granted.

Minor filed the bankruptcy petition on May 24, listing assets of as much as $50 million and debt of as much as $100 million. In a Chapter 7, an impartial trustee is appointed to administer the case and sell assets such as automobiles.

Minor, 47, sold CNET to CBS Corp. in 2008, netting himself about $200 million, according to CNN Money. He lost money on bad bets on real estate and other ventures.

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In the petition, Minor said he didn’t have money for his unsecured creditors, and that he intended to hand over all his eligible assets to a court official who would sell them to the highest bidder and wipe Minor’s finances clean.

Halsey Minor’s Minor Ventures invested in early-stage technology startups including GrandCentral Communications Inc., which Google Inc. bought in 2007 for about $65 million and renamed Google Voice.

Since then, Minor has been selling his art collection to pay debts. In 2010, he sold a painting of a blue-eyed nurse by Richard Prince and an aluminum couch by Marc Newson to help raise $21.1 million for his creditors. Proceeds from the sales went toward a $21.6 million judgment obtained in 2009 by Bank of America Corp. affiliate ML Private Finance on a late loan.

In April 2010, Sotheby’s Inc. won a $6.6 million judgment against him in connection with three artworks he bought at auction and later refused to pay for.

The case is In re Halsey McLean Minor, 13-bk-23787, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California (Los Angeles).

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