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Home / Articles / News / News Articles /  Koerber Indicted
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Koerber Indicted

Utah County's 'Free Capitalist' Up on Federal Charges

By Eric S. Peterson
Posted // May 26,2009 -

Utah County businessman Rick Koeber was indicted May 26 on charges of mail fraud, wire fraud and tax evasion resulting from an alleged Ponzi scheme he conducted with numerous investors and several of his businesses including Founders Capital, Franklin Squires Investments and Franklin Squires Companies.

United States Attorney for Utah Brett Tolman announced today the business model was a classic Ponzi scheme that culled approximately $100 million in investor funds—over $50 million of which was used to pay off new investors.

The indictment also alleges investment funds were funneled into a number of personal expenses, including $1 million spent on expensive automobiles as well more than $5 million invested in film production. For tax evasion, Koerber was alleged to have used several of his business entities to cover his personal expenses and failed to pay roughly $250,000 in federal taxes.

A summons has been issued for Koerber to appear in federal court, though a date had not been specified. The ongoing investigation is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service and the Utah Division of Securities.
Tolman and others warned this kind of white-collar crime was becoming all too prevalent in the state, with fraudsters utilizing common bonds of family, party or religion to con unsuspecting investors.

Koerber was not present for the press release. A vocal critic of the Utah Division of Securities, Koerber has since 2007 gone on the offensive against investigators, challenging their investigations and even saying one had “the IQ of a rat” on his radio program the Free Capitalist show formerly on KTKK (K-Talk) 630 AM.

He has also cultivated political friends who have aided him in his crusade against state regulators, including Rep. Carl Wimmer, R-Herriman who, City Weekly reported in July 2008, had sponsored an audit of the division on behalf of his friend Koerber.

This political battle was only hinted at during the press conference when Utah Commerce Director Francine Giani expressed her thanks to partnering investigators with the FBI and the IRS as well as giving her thanks to Governor John Huntsman, Jr. and Lt. Governor Gary Herbert, “who encouraged me to go forward with the case no matter the cost,” Giani said.
For more on Koerber visit cityweekly.net and check out “House of Cards,” “White Collar Greed,” “All Bets are Off,” and “Disclose This.”

 
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REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // May 27,2009 at 13:21

EllisWyatt, WTF? Can you read at a scholastic level that will allow you to comprehend the indictment?

Your reply reads like of those awful liberal screeds about Jesus variously being a community organizer, a hippie, or a liberal becaue some of the behaviors line up as a match.

Apparently you don't see the connection between the indictment and people who lost huge chunks of dough on a Ponzi scheme.

Will you come back an apologize when Koerber is convicted and put away? I pity the fool who has the FBI, the IRS and Francine Giani going after them with the Gov's blessing.

Now he can add Cri'min'al to his self-titled announcement of being a "Cap'i'ti-list, Mor'mon and D'a'd.

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // May 27,2009 at 08:58

Who is Rick Koerber?
Let's look at the facts:
1. He raised $100M capial.
2. He acquired over 200 properties.
3. He is very well known, for good and bad.
4. He bought, and funded the purchase of, restaurants.
5. He had some awesome cars.
6. He funded the making of movies.
7. He succeeded in his quest to "annoy the socialists".

Okay, therefore what? What is an indictment?

An indictment is an accusation of wrongdoing. Mr. Koerber is being accused of one count each of tax evasion, mail fraud, and wire fraud. The charge for running an illegal ponzi scheme is usually "securities fraud". This man appears to be under public scrutiny in response to a widespread government and media contest to see who can slander businessmen the most effectively.

Any one of us could be brought up on three or more counts of something if we angered the wrong people enough. Think about it. Ever left out some tip or income on your taxes, or sent payment to your credit card company with a check that might not clear? You could be indicted for tax evasion and mail fraud.

Can no one find more dirt on this guy than this? They have dozens of counts against any other "ponzi schemers". Oh, wait, but this guy actually did business... He bought restaurants and made short-term loans for others to invest in businesses, and he risked money on movie-making ventures. He bought and sold expensive cars (Jay Leno). Holy cow! He bought 200 houses, and owned them when the market collapsed? No wonder he's not rich anymore.

I'm pretty sure he's not broke though. Businessmen that diversify into a variety of businesses don't have them all collapse at once. I'm sure he's still doing okay, rebuilding what once was a vast empire of wealth. As for the indictment: please; government bureaucrats can create likely accusations against anyone when they want to. The only way to be safe is to remain a looser forever, and that seems to be the common trend. Good luck with that.

 

Posted // May 27,2009 at 13:49 - Ellis Wyatt is a character in the Ayn Rand book, Atlas Shrugged. Anytime the government stepped in to regulate his oil business, he would set fire to the oil well. $20 says this EllisWyatt commented is Rick Koerber. It's not really that much of a stretch of the imagination to think a bottom feeding, scumbag like Koerber would take on that nickname based on the characters personality in the book. I've been reading about this assclown for over a year now, and it makes me giddy to see that he's finally being brought down. Rot in hell, Rick. :)

 

 
 
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