Zaxby’s, based in Oconee County near Athens, has more than 580 restaurants across more than a dozen states, according to its Website.
A spokesman for the FDIC declined to comment, citing agency policy related to ongoing litigation.
The loan was backed by several parcels totaling more than 400 acres near Lula in northeastern Hall County, according to information in a June 2011 foreclosure notice in The Times newspaper in Gainesville.
Cornelia-based CB&T issued the loan to River Bluff in December 2007, according to the foreclosure notice. The company renewed the loan a year later.
The FDIC said in the filing that McLeroy and McRiver LLC each guaranteed the debt.
In January 2010, CB&T was seized by state regulators. The FDIC, as receiver of the bank, sold many of its assets to a South Carolina institution that reopened the bank under its original name.
The FDIC, however, took over as “lawful holder” of the contested loan, according to the complaint. In mid-2011, the property was foreclosed and sold for $2.3 million. The FDIC said the defendants owe the “deficiency” of $11.5 million.
McLeroy founded Zaxby’s with a childhood friend in 1990.