Law

Judge moves Durham fraud trial to next year

April 7, 2011
Scott Olson
Federal Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson on Thursday morning vacated the original trial date of May 16 and instead set jury selection for June 8, 2012. Meanwhile, lawyers for Tim Durham argued for his release from a halfway house he was sent to on Wednesday.
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Judge hears arguments in White election challenge

April 6, 2011
Associated Press
Attorneys for Democrats and Republican Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White accused each other's clients of political manipulation during a Wednesday hearing.
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Compromise elusive on Indiana sentencing changes

April 6, 2011
Associated Press
An Indiana legislator trying to find a compromise on a plan that Gov. Mitch Daniels originally pushed to help stem the state's prison costs seems to still have work ahead.
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Durham ordered to be held at halfway house for 7 days

April 6, 2011
Scott Olson
A federal magistrate on Wednesday ordered indicted financier Tim Durham held at a halfway house for seven days until he can provide a better accounting of his finances. The magistrate said "money means flight."
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Judge gives probation to three men for water violations

April 5, 2011
Associated Press
U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker sentenced 61-year-old Michael R. Milem of Carmel, 44-year-old Mark R. Snow of Brazil and Joseph T. Biggio, 51, of Illinois after accepting their guilty pleas for violating the Federal Clean Water Act.
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Indiana judge dismisses lawsuit over forfeiture funds

April 5, 2011
Associated Press
An Indianapolis judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit that accused 78 county prosecutors of breaking the law by not turning over assets seized from criminals to a state school fund.
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IT provider fires back at local not-for-profit

April 4, 2011
 IBJ Staff
Information Technology services provider Beracha Foundation is seeking more than $730,000 from Indianapolis-based Evangelical Baptist Missions Inc. for breaching IT and consulting contracts, plus real and punitive damages.
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Firm coordinator promoted to manager of diversity, pro bono

April 2, 2011
 IBJ Staff
The Indianapolis law firm of Baker & Daniels LLP has promoted Brita A. Horvath to manager of diversity and pro bono.
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Suit accuses Bank of America of fraud, racketeering

March 31, 2011
Scott Olson
The complaint, filed in Marion Superior Court, follows a similar suit that was dismissed in federal court. Bank of America and its Countrywide unit are accused of using perjured affidavits to foreclose on homes.
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Battery charges dropped against Fair Finance co-owner

March 31, 2011
Cory Schouten
The Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office has dropped domestic battery charges against Fair Finance Co. co-owner Jim Cochran after the alleged victims declined to pursue the case.
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Indy lawyer pays $371,000 to settle Fair Finance lawsuit

March 31, 2011
Greg Andrews
Fair Finance's bankruptcy trustee says attorney Stephen Plopper and his wife are paying the full amount due under a loan that matured in 2006.
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Second whistleblower joins suit against Rolls-Royce

March 31, 2011
Associated Press
A second person has joined a lawsuit alleging Rolls-Royce Corp. concealed repeated defects at an Indianapolis aircraft engine plant and fired workers for reporting problems.
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Judge unseals some Fair Finance raid records

March 30, 2011
Greg Andrews
Still under wraps is the the FBI affidavit in support of the Fair Finance search warrant. Prosecutors contend releasing that "would greatly prejudice the criminal case."
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Zimmer goes on offensive against lawyers

March 30, 2011
J.K. Wall
The Warsaw-based maker of orthopedic implants has filed suit to stop a Detroit-area law firm from making allegedly false claims and using its trademarks on websites designed to attract plaintiffs to sue Zimmer over one of its knee-replacement implants called NexGen.
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Fair Finance trustee renews call for return of political donations

March 28, 2011
Cory Schouten
The trustee in the Fair Finance bankruptcy has renewed a call for recipients of political contributions from accused Ponzi schemer Tim Durham to return the tainted cash after a federal grand jury indicted Durham on 12 felony counts.
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Another suit filed in Emmis, financier dispute

March 28, 2011
Emmis Communications Corp. is accusing Alden Global Capital, which once backed Emmis CEO Jeff Smulyan's attempt to take the company private, of violating the "short-swing rule." This is the third suit involving the parties since Smulyan called off the move last year.
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Feds go after Fair Finance CFO, despite murkier motive

March 26, 2011
Greg Andrews
Unlike the other defendants, Fair Finance executive Rick Snow isn’t accused of tapping the company for a bevy of loans, then failing to repay the money.
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Brightpoint settles lawsuit with vendor

March 25, 2011
Scott Olson
The distributor of wireless phones agreed to drop its complaint, which accused a Massachusetts software provider of fraud and negligence in addition to breaching its agreement and warranty.
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Durham's ex-wife explains bond for indicted financier

March 23, 2011
Scott Olson
Joan SerVaas issued a written statement saying she and her father signed off on a $1 million bond because they're confident Tim Durham will continue to cooperate with federal authorities and abide by the conditions of his release.
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Formstack stuck in suit by Oklahoma tech firm

March 23, 2011
Chris O'Malley
Online form builder says a lawsuit from Tulsa-based MacroSolve Inc. against it and three other tech firms is without merit.
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Indicted financier Durham ordered released on $1M bond

March 21, 2011
Associated Press
A federal magistrate in California has ordered a former Indiana businessman accused in a $200 million fraud scheme released on $1 million bond.
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EEOC: Local bar fired worker over pregnancy

March 21, 2011
The federal agency is suing the owner of the Wild Beaver Saloon in Broad Ripple for allegedly firing an employee because of her pregnancy, which violates the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
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Ex-Countrymark CEO clamors for conviction reversal

March 21, 2011
 IBJ Staff
David Swanson, who was sentenced to 15 years in prison for skimming $2.7 million from CountryMark in 2003, was in court in Indianapolis last week, trying to get his sentence reduced or conviction overturned.
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Indiana senator returning cash from troubled financier

March 21, 2011
Associated Press
An Indiana state senator is returning campaign contributions from Timothy Durham, a former Indianapolis businessman charged with running a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors of more than $200 million.
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Convictions likely in federal Fair Finance case

March 19, 2011
Scott Olson
Defense attorneys representing indicted businessman Tim Durham and two other executives tied to bankrupt Fair Finance Co. could have a hard time convincing a jury to find them innocent. Federal prosecutors won 94.1 percent of their cases in 2009.
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