The messy legal situation that wiped out this year's Mavericks surf contest is getting even more complicated.
NBC Bay Area has obtained documents that show the San Mateo County Harbor District is objecting to the auction process planned by the current contest organizer 'Cartel Management' and its connected entity 'Titans of Mavericks.'
As NBC Bay Area has reported, Cartel Management has filed for bankruptcy protection and plans an auction June 1st to sell its assets which, Cartel claims, includes a key contest permit from the harbor district.
But the harbor district filed a complaint objecting to any 'sweeping sale' that includes the permit.
A bankruptcy hearing is scheduled for June 7.
"Cartel seems to be presenting this sale as some sort of ready made 'turn key' event ready to be put on by anyone willing to buy the assets and the permit" said harbor commissioner Sabrina Brennan.
"We're concerned whoever obtains the permit is capable of running the event and has the financial resources to pull it off, " Brennan said. "We're worried about public safety and the safety of the athletes."
"We also believe Cartel is misleading potential buyers by listing some permits, including one from the Coastal Commission, which have expired."
Brennan added there is still some question on whether Cartel legally has the rights to the harbor district permit since the district board never saw the final permit, which attorneys representing Cartel and the district changed without board approval.
This latest move by the harbor district follows other legal action taken by others involved in the contest, including main sponsor Red Bull and original contest founder Jeff Clark.
NBC Bay Area was the first to report that Cartel filed for bankruptcy protection that ultimately sank this year's competition.
The surf contest is an international event in which the world's top surfers have 48-hours to come to Pillar Point once organizers deem the big waves worthy.
This year's contest was to be the first with a women's heat.
Cartel Management has said in the past it considers itself the rightful owner of contest assets. Attempts to reach Cartel regarding the harbor district action have been unsuccessful.