Over $400,000 seized from account linked to Rapids Theatre

The future of the historic theatre is uncertain
Posted at 3:06 PM, Oct 15, 2021

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WKBW) — Federal investigators seized more than $400,000 from a bank account linked to the Rapids Theatre earlier this year.

The theatre is an indoor concert venue and events center located on Main Street that dates back to the 1920s.

It reopened in 2009 and is owned by John L. Hutchins.

As first reported by The Buffalo News, the U.S. Attorney’s Office filed paperwork showing $402,302 seized from a bank account for CWE Entertainment Corp.

Nearly $2,000 was also seized from an account belonging to Roberto M. Soliman, according to the same document.

US District Court Currency ... by Sean Mickey

The 7 Eyewitness News I-Team found limited liability companies, registered through the New York State Division of Corporation, linking CWE Entertainment, Soliman and the Rapids Theatre.

Records also indicate Soliman is the chief financial officer of the Rapids Theatre.

There was no explanation given as to why the money was seized.

Theatre owner John Hutchins faces several financial difficulties himself.

In November, he was ordered by a state judge to pay $3.28 million to Maryland based company McCormick 103, LLC, to settle loan obligations.

McCormick 103, LLC -against... by Sean Mickey

An attorney was also recently appointed as a temporary receiver of the theatre, following a judgment by State Supreme Court Judge Timothy J. Walker, as creditors attempt to collect millions of dollars from Hutchins and his businesses.

Rapids Theatre E169947/2019 by Sean Mickey

The theatre, which has benefited from grants from the City of Niagara Falls, has not responded to the I-Team's request for comment.