More than 1,100 attend Fair investor meeting

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A meeting of Fair Finance Co. investors held Tuesday night at a northeast Ohio hotel drew an overflow crowd of 1,100 people, many of them wracked with fear they won’t get their money back, an attorney who attended said.

Tom Hargett of Fishers-based Maddox Hargett & Caruso said the informational meeting organized by his firm and Columbus, Ohio-based David P. Meyer & Associates attracted far more people than anticipated.

The firms last month filed a lawsuit seeking to rescind $200 million in investor purchases of Fair Finance securities and to slap company owner Tim Durham, an Indianapolis businessman, and other insiders with millions of dollars in punitive damages. The case is seeking class-action certification.

“I was overwhelmed, shocked and saddened by the response,” Hargett said of the meeting in the Akron suburb of Fairlawn. “The angst and anger, and sense of fear, in this group was just unbelievable.”

Fair Finance raised money by selling investment certificates—securities that could only be purchased by Ohio residents. Fair’s filings with regulators don’t say how many investors it had. An average investment of $50,000 would indicate Fair had about 4,000 investors.

The Akron, Ohio, company has remained closed since Nov. 24, when FBI agents executed search warrants and seized records at Durham’s Indianapolis office and at Fair’s headquarters.

The raids occurred a month after IBJ published an investigative story raising questions about whether Fair had the financial wherewithal to repay investors.

The story reported that Durham used Fair almost like a personal bank after buying it seven years ago. He, partners and related firms now owe it more than $168 million.

Durham, 47, has denied doing anything improper, and has not been charged with a crime.



  • Frustrating
    About just how long this investigation is taking. While I understand the desire to build an "air-tight" case, I feel for all of the Ohio investors that are literally left it the black. How can anyone justify leaving all these people dangling...day after day....waiting to hear it their investments are good (unlikely). COME ON FOLKS.....PLEASE HAVE SOME EMPATHY AND LET THESE POOR PEOPLE HEAR THE FINAL VERDICT THAT THEIR MONEY IS DEAD...AT LEAST THEN THEY CAN GET ON WITH THEIR LIVES!!!
  • Stop talking about me!
    This isn't the kind of publicity I wanted!! I wanted everyone to think I was a stellar investor and steward of money, not what I really am!!!!!
  • Charged with a crime
    As Glen said,Mr Durham has not been charged with a crime. YET.
    There is no smoke without fire and be assured charges will come in one form or another.

    Anyone asking why Danny's court date has been put back from January 13th until March 5th?
  • Can anyone explain how Carl Brizzi got his property valuation on a very expensive house lowered to under $100k?
    How come Carl gets his valuation lowered like this but Melanie didn't?

  • Correction
    Durham posted as "tsdurhamoei" on yahoo. I misspelled his avatar in the previous message.
  • re
    My wife and I are millionaires--not flashy, not mega millionaires, but a net worth in the high 7 figures which will be enough to sustain us the rest of our lives. We both still go to work every day, pay our taxes and are law-abiding citizens.

    We both drive Mercedes and live in a paid for house. It's a nice house but not 30,000 sf. We don't have two $15M houses in LA. We don't have 70 collector cars with a full-time staff to take care of them, or a yacht with a full-time staff to take care of it and a corresponding $5,000 a day docking slip in which to "park it."

    I remember back about 5 years ago Tim Durham was posting multiple times on the Yahoo Brightpoint board. Some of us who talked about how weird this is questioned when the guy actually worked since all he seemed to be was "tsudrhamoei" on yahoo. Then, the next thing you know he is on the news constantly getting his mug shot taken in London, attending a high-end car auction, etc etc.

    To us it was always suspect that Durham was really earning the massive amount of money he was spending. Now we know where the money came from. I am personally appalled to hear it called "loans." A banker cannot just help himself to his client funds to the tune of almost $200,000,000 and call those monies "loans" and then, when caught, say "I'll pay the money back when the economy gets better."

    But, I will say I have to hand it to Durham. He didn't seem to me to be smart enough to have pulled this off for as long as he did, which means to me that he had a lot of help. Now that the feds have the banking records and his Obsidian computers and server, hopefully we'll all find out soon what the truth is. And, I hope it's pretty soon since Morrison removed the asset freeze because I don't believe for a second Durham isn't hiding money as you read this.
  • Re
    How can you say Durham at his height was worth millions? I heard from a reliable source that Durham allegedly ran Carpenter into the ground and lost millions there, which was allegedly the icing on the end of the marriage cake...when Durham bought Pyramid he couldn't even come up with the money, so much for having "millions"--got repeated extensions there and had to get partial seller note....had to get a seller note on Fair Finance....


    look what he has done with control of the hard-earned life savings of his Ohio investors...


    It was not $200M of certificates everyone, Durham offered OVER $1.5 BILLION--wake up people
  • Hey Scott! (oops, I mean Glen)
    Hey there, you do know it's over, don't you? Now you might have to get a job instead of peddling those ridiculous speeches where you talk about "customer service" and how you had the car wreck (NOT)...here's are ideas for a book for you:

    "How my best buddy got caught running an affinity crime"

    "How a County Prosecutor with four kids went from being sued for non-payments of kids gymnastics bills to multiple houses, condos, Lexus SUV, Harley, other expensive cars, investment portfolio and restaurants in just one year on $125k a year!"

    "The Small Penis Club: How rooted issues drive your life

    "Turning off your computer and focusing away from the news when your name is daily fodder for the newspapers"

    "The Godfather: Teaching your namesake how to spend money that belongs to elderly Ohioans"

    And, last....sorry, couldn't resist

    "What it feels like to really be a loser."

  • glen...
    all the ibj has done is to keep it real.Durham is an absolute piece of trash.
  • Do I have to give the implants back?
    I'm so sad, here I thought I was marrying Mr. Rich and wouldn't you know--the IRS had all those liens against us, my husband owes you know who all that money for the house....and I've been faking the Os cuz we all know a small pecker doesn't cut it...but at least I got the implants which I WILL NEED for the future. Please don't take those back!
  • Will the feds go after the brokers who did the trades?
    I don't want to have to be hitting anyone with my tennis racquet
  • Jail time
    The Feds will find it the hidden assests. He is not smart enough. He will spend at LEAST 20 years in jail. A similar situation but on a larger scale Stanford faces over 300 years.
  • All the money is gone
    At his peak, Tim was only worth a few million. Yet he had a lifestyle of a billionaire. To fund it he took everything he could from Fair ($200m) and spent it on extravagances, which cost him even more money to maintain. Maintenance expenditures are costs not assets. Those funds are gone. That is why of the 1,100 people in attendance, the party's instigator, Ponzi swindler Tim Durham, was no where to be found. If Tim has truly done nothing improper, he would face his accusers and provide complete details. Time is the enemy. Shortly the maintenance bills on all his extravagances will come due and he will not be able to take from Fair to pay for it. Recovery will be 20 cents on the dollar and the attorneys will take it all. Remember Tim hid assets in other people's names so that if he got caught, plan B was to spend a short break in Club Fed, and then reclaim the assets and resume the life of luxury. Your money is gone. Tim always believed "What's mine is mine and what's yours is mine". For nearly 8 years it was true as he looted the Amish and it will be true again when he gets out of prison and reclaims your assets.

    • Previous Article
      What happened to the previous IBJ article linking Brizzi to all the real estate deals? I can't seem to find it anywhere. I wonder if strong-arm tactics are being used at this point.
    • B'bub
      Calm down. Glen is probably one of Tim's clingers-on who now has to admit he has been sucking up to a loser. And what's worse, he may have to actually start paying his own way through life.
    • Are You Serious?????
      You read this article and the only injustice that jumps out at you is MUDSLINGING???? How about the 1100 people that attended the Fair meeting? How about their hundreds of thousands of dollars of losses? How about the injustice of the concentration of lending (which is barred in REAL banking) to Durham? How about the inadequate disclosures of risk to un-savy Amish and elderly investors?

      I want the IBJ to keep the heat on the Fed AND Durham. These people deserve to get this resolved and either their money back (unlikely), or criminal charges filed. Ohio folks are entitled to answers!!!
    • Responsibility for Panic: IBJ?
      Beginning to look as if the IBJ and it's personal vendetta against Tim Durham have resulted in a lot of 'angst' among a lot of Ohio folks...of course, as the IBJ reminds us at the end of every article;"Mr. Durham has not been charged with any crime". Perhaps Mr. Maurer should rein in the mudslinging. What goes around comes around...as they say!

      Post a comment to this story

      We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
      You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
      Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
      No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
      We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

      Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

      Sponsored by

      facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

      Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
      Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
      Subscribe to IBJ
      1. I never thought I'd see the day when a Republican Mayor would lead the charge in attempting to raise every tax we have to pay. Now it's income taxes and property taxes that Ballard wants to increase. And to pay for a pre-K program? Many studies have shown that pre-K offer no long-term educational benefits whatsoever. And Ballard is pitching it as a way of fighting crime? Who is he kidding? It's about government provided day care. It's a shame that we elected a Republican who has turned out to be a huge big spending, big taxing, big borrowing liberal Democrat.

      2. Why do we blame the unions? They did not create the 11 different school districts that are the root of the problem.

      3. I was just watching an AOW race from cleveland in 1997...in addition to the 65K for the race, there were more people in boats watching that race from the lake than were IndyCar fans watching the 2014 IndyCar season finale in the Fontana grandstands. Just sayin...That's some resurgence modern IndyCar has going. Almost profitable, nobody in the grandstands and TV ratings dropping 61% at some tracks in the series. Business model..."CRAZY" as said by a NASCAR track general manager. Yup, this thing is purring like a cat! Sponsors...send them your cash, pronto!!! LOL, not a chance.

      4. I'm sure Indiana is paradise for the wealthy and affluent, but what about the rest of us? Over the last 40 years, conservatives and the business elite have run this country (and state)into the ground. The pendulum will swing back as more moderate voters get tired of Reaganomics and regressive social policies. Add to that the wave of minority voters coming up in the next 10 to 15 years and things will get better. unfortunately we have to suffer through 10 more years of gerrymandered districts and dispropionate representation.

      5. Funny thing....rich people telling poor people how bad the other rich people are wanting to cut benefits/school etc and that they should vote for those rich people that just did it. Just saying..............