Batsakis v. Demotsis

226 S.W. 2d 673 (Tex. 1949)

Facts

Batsakis (P) sued Demotsis (D) for principal and interest on a loan document executed in 1942 during WW II. P sued D to recover $2,000 with interest at the rate of 8% per annum from April 2, 1942. P sued based on a letter which Demotsis (D) agreed to. The letter recited that D had received $2,000 U.S. on April 2, 1942 during the German occupation of Greece and agreed to pay it with 8% interest when he was able to. D defended by failure of consideration and that the original loan of 500,000 drachmae was equal to $25.00 U.S. The instrument sued on was signed and delivered in the Kingdom of Greece on or about April 2, 1942, at which time both P and D were residents of and residing in the Kingdom of Greece. D had property and money in the U.S. but because of the war could not make use of it. P agreed to and did lend D the sum of 500,000 drachmae, which at that time, on or about April 2, 1942, had the value of $25.00 in money of the United States of America. D alleged that P knowing D's financial distress and desire to return to the United States of America, exacted of her the written instrument. D testified that she did receive 500,000 drachmas from P. It is not clear whether she received all the 500,000 drachmas or only a portion of them before she signed the instrument in question. Her testimony clearly shows that the understanding of the parties was that P would give her the 500,000 drachmas if she would sign the instrument. The trial court awarded P $1,163.83 for principal and interest of $750 and the balance being interest. P appealed.