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Fair trustee settles with local political groups

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The Fair Finance bankruptcy trustee has agreed to settle lawsuits with three local political groups in a bid to recover contributions from indicted financier Tim Durham.

The settlements with the Marion County Republican Central Committee, Greater Indianapolis Republican Finance Committee and the Committee to Elect Lawrence Mayor Paul Ricketts total more than $60,000, according to court documents.

Trustee Brian A. Bash submitted the settlements Monday for court approval.

Bash is attempting to recover some of the more than $200 million Fair Finance owes to 5,200 Ohio investors.

Akron, Ohio-based Fair Finance Co. had been run by Durham as part of what law enforcement officials have called the largest corporate fraud case in Indiana's history. Durham and two partners were arrested in March and charged with 12 felony counts.

The lawsuits against the three political committees sought donations made by Durham since 2006.

Pending court approval, the trustee will recover $32,000 from the Ricketts campaign, $23,751.55 from the Greater Indianapolis Republican Finance Committee, and $4,250 from the Marion County Republican Central Committee.

Altogether, Durham donated $40,000 to Ricketts and made political contributions of $27,943 to Indianapolis Republicans and $5,000 to Marion County Republicans.

Both Ricketts and Marion County Republican Party Chairman Kyle Walker could not be reached for comment Tuesday morning.

A lawyer for the trustee said in a court filing that the settlements “outweigh the inconvenience, delay and uncertainty associated with litigation.”

“We’re satisfied with the settlements, and we’re happy the political committees made this decision,” said David Proano, an attorney for Bash.

More high-profile political figures, including Gov. Mitch Daniels and former Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi, have not returned campaign contributions from Durham that they say have already been spent.

Daniels and Brizzi each received about $200,000 from him.

Proano said the trustee is in active discussions about a settlement with Daniels and Brizzi.

In April, Speaker of the House Brian Bosma agreed to return the $10,000 contribution he received from Durham.

Durham and Cochran, along with Rick Snow, were arrested March 16 after being indicted on 12 felony counts, including conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud.

The three have pleaded not guilty.

More of IBJ's coverage of Durham and Fair Finance can be found here.

 

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  • Bosma did the right thing....
    I remember reading early on in this case where one political person bave back every cent and as a result had to drop out of the running; wish all polititians would follow the example set by that rightous man and Brian Bosma; Wish I remembered who it was that sacrified his own gain to do the right thing....those are the people we need to elect
  • Brizzi and Daniels need to come clean
    Already spent the $200k each? They each had their war chests, even though neither is purportedly planning to run for another office. Of course they can and SHOULD return these ill gained funds.
  • Amen Brother
    Michael hit the nail right on the head. The only people who are going to recover anything are the attorneys.

    I wish the "trustee" would just tell the truth about this and say that he's trying to line the pockets of his pals.
  • bash
    Bash is full of BS. He wants to come across as the helping to recover monies for those that have been defrauded. Bash is colliecting money to pay his $1,400,000.oo legal bill. Once he empties the pot...I assure you - we will not see or hear about him anymore.

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