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Orangeburg chicken restaurant reopens amidst legal troubles

ORANGEBURG (AP) An Orangeburg fast food chicken chain that was shut down because of a franchise legal dispute has reopened.

Church’s Chicken, which is located in front of the Prince of Orange Mall, reopened for business on June 29.

The reopening of the restaurant came on the heels of some legal trouble.

The Orangeburg Church’s Chicken was one of 24 Church’s restaurants listed in a lawsuit alleging their franchisees owed millions in unpaid debts.

The restaurant franchisee, which was controlled by Charleston-based State Acquisitions LLC, was sued by First Franchise Capital Corp. for more than $3.3 million in allegedly unpaid debts.

According to Orangeburg County property records, the property is owned by New York-based Vereit out of Phoenix, Arizona.

Vereit, which owns 18 Church’s properties, sought more than $815,000 in back rent and unpaid taxes. It also claimed the buildings’ wear and tear “exceed reasonable and ordinary” standards in violation of the leases.

Church’s corporate officials renegotiated leases for the stores so they could reopen as company-operated Church’s restaurants.

Church’s Chicken officials did not immediately respond when reached for comment about the Orangeburg restaurant’s reopening.

In addition to legal issues, the Orangeburg restaurant was also shut down because of fires in February 2017 and August 2015.

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