American TV personality Geraldo Rivera is suing the co-op board of the housing development he lives in, alleging members wrongly kept a $10,000 (GBP5,550) deposit on one of his properties.

The FOX NEWS senior correspondent owns two homes in New Jersey's 26 acre (10.5 hectare) Edgewater Colony, where residents own their homes but share ownership of the land.

Rivera claims the board is refusing to return the security deposit for construction of the first home he bought about five years ago, among other allegations.

He says, "They are arbitrarily and capriciously interfering with my house, down to minimalist details like whether or not I should have a fish tank, or whether I should plant a certain kind of flower or tree."

KAREN PAINTER RANDALL, a lawyer for Edgewater Colony, insists the lawsuit is "entirely without merit".

In a letter sent earlier this year (04) to the colony's board, Rivera said he believes that work he has done on his property has improved the value of all the development's properties.

He wrote, "I pay my taxes, pick up my trash, donate to local charities and cherish the Hudson and the rich history of Burdett's Landing. I intend living here always, hopefully in peace and loving my neighbours.

"But if you want war, then you will get one."

13/09/2004 21:41