An Indiana cattle broker, who took his bull calf investor money straight to the casino, plead guilty this week to one charge of wire fraud in federal court. According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, Brian D. Jones agreed to pay back the $473,000 he took from his victims and could face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
Jones, 38, of Vevay, Indiana was charged with defrauding investors in his livestock brokerage business in July 2017. According to court documents, Jones operated a business buying bull calves from dairy farms in Wisconsin and selling them to cattle ranches in Texas and Missouri. He began soliciting investors in 2015, promising sizable returns for the investments.
Rather than invest the funds, prosecutors say the cattle broker used the funds for his personal benefit such as gambling at casinos. The indictment also alleges that Jones used the investment funds to pay “returns” back to earlier investors as if the funds had actually generated income through investment in his business. By the end of 2015, the indictment says, Jones had squandered funds from the cattle purchasers and was in debt with his suppliers and purchasers.
Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio said Jones had fabricated bank documents to show that he had sizable business deposits that would soon be “released’ by the bank.”
“He also allegedly sent checks to investors including some in the Southern District of Ohio for investment returns, only to have the checks bounce due to insufficient funds in his account,” Glassman said.