Local News

Fayetteville ad firm closes unexpectedly

Posted March 8, 2012

— A longtime Fayetteville advertising agency appears to have closed its doors in the wake of a civil lawsuit filed by a Florida bank claiming the company owes it millions of dollars.

Secret Service agents were seen Thursday carrying items from Smith Advertising & Associates, which has worked since 1974 on accounts for banks, mortgage companies and tourism bureaus in Fayetteville, Ocean Isle Beach and Sarasota, Fla.

Clients said Thursday that they received notification that the business has closed for good and that it gave no explanation for the sudden closure.

Gary Smith, the company's founder, could not be reached Thursday for comment. Neither could his son, Todd Smith, who serves as vice president.

Regions Bank in Florida claimed in a check fraud suit filed last month that the business and a Florida developer owe nearly $10 million combined.

The lawsuit says that Smith wrote checks to the developer totaling nearly $15 million, and that the checks were declined after the developer put them into his bank account. He then withdrew money against those deposits before the checks could bounce, according to the complaint.


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  • Glock Ranger Mar 8, 2012

    I find it interesting that the word "gun" was not included in the report, above. However, it was pointed out,in the TV news story, that "GUN-toting Secret Service Agents" were removing evidence from the scene. Then, at the end of the story, it was emphasized, again, that no one was there, except GUN-toting agents.

    I emphasized 'GUN" because the reporter did, in that very special way they have of making it sound like a gun is BAD. I mean, Federal LEOs, processing a crime scene, with GUNS on their hips!!! Say it ain't so!!! ;-O

  • Mr. Middle of the Road Mar 8, 2012

    Nice responsible business man.

  • piene2 Mar 8, 2012

    This is going to be fun!