About This Site
This site was created to shed light on a civil trial playing out in a Palm Beach County courtroom. It involves a Florida real estate developer named Anthony V. Pugliese, and the estate of Fred DeLuca, the deceased co-founder of Subway, the largest fast food franchise in the world. The case, FD Destiny, LLC vs AVP Destiny, LLC (DeLuca vs Pugliese) centers around a complicated business relationship that went very much awry. In 2005, DeLuca asked to be a partner in a development that Pugliese was planning to build in Central Florida. The project, on 27,000 acres at the intersection of State Road 60 and Route 441 in Osceola County, was to be the first eco-sustainable community in the world, and a hub for research and sustainable industry. The name of the project was Destiny, and building it was Pugliese’s dream.
In the early 2000’s, Subway franchises were booming. DeLuca and his partner, Peter Buck, were collecting $7 million each a week from franchisees in strip malls and street corners around the world. DeLuca had invested some of his money in boats, houses and commercial real estate, but he had plenty more.
Florida real estate values were also soaring, DeLuca bought a house in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea and set up a satellite office in Miami. His banker at Bank of America, Frances Saavedra, who also happened to be his mistress, introduced him to Pugliese, who had built award-winning commercial, industrial and storage projects in New Jersey and Florida. In Florida, his projects included Pineapple Grove in Delray Beach, which helped transform the city, and others in Dade, Broward, Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River and Osceola counties.
Pugliese had chosen the land for the Destiny project, and was seeking investors. DeLuca agreed to be one. What followed was a saga of deception, hidden motives and breached trust. Though DeLuca signed on as a partner, he never acted as one. DeLuca insisted on becoming the financial arm of the project. He borrowed money from Wachovia Bank at a low interest rate that he concealed from Pugliese, and then loaned the money to the project at a much higher rate. From the very start he sought profit for himself at the expense of Pugliese and the Destiny project; his behavior ultimately led to the project’s demise. DeLuca’s behavior, it turns out, was part of a pattern. The reclusive, billionaire sandwich king had a history that is worth examining, as he was involved in many deals, and left many embittered associates in his wake. This case serves as just one example, but it is a telling one. The evidence we offer here – depositions, exhibits, pleadings, and court testimony – shows what really happened between Anthony Pugliese and Fred DeLuca.