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A long legal battle between a disgruntled vendor and a proto-bank sponsored by real-estate guru and U-T publisher Douglas Manchester is about to have another round in court, this time in Houston, Texas.

The extended tale began back in January 2008 when the La Jolla Republican and some friends set out to establish the Manchester Financial Bank. The plan was dropped after that year’s stock market crash, but not before the would-be financial operation contracted for work by 21st Century Financial Services. The unformed bank claimed it didn’t have to pay the bill, but in 2010 an arbitrator sided with 21st Century, awarding it $477,070.39, plus interest until paid in full.

The Manchester partners sued, but last spring U.S. judge Lee Yeakel ruled in favor of the vendor. Manchester’s appeal of that adverse judgment has been set for February 6.

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