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Originally published Friday, January 28, 2011 at 3:04 PM

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Bank seizes Walla Walla winery

Community Bank in Walla Walla has seized Whitman Cellars LLC and closed the winery.

The Associated Press

WALLA WALLA, Wash. —

Community Bank in Walla Walla has seized Whitman Cellars LLC and closed the winery.

The Tri-City Herald reports that the attorney for the bank, Andrea Burkhart, says it defaulted on loans and that Friday's seizure stems from a lawsuit the bank filed earlier this week.

A telephone message seeking comment from Whitman Cellars was not immediately returned.

Burkhart says a sheriff's deputy was present when the locks to the downtown winery were changed. She says Community Bank plans to sell the company's assets.

Whitman Cellars began making wine in 1998 and opened its Walla Walla testing room in 2001.

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Information from: Tri-City Herald, http://www.tri-cityherald.com

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