Columbus-area businessman faces federal fraud charges

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A Columbus-area businessman is facing multiple federal charges that he defrauded banks, credit unions and investors of more than $10 million.

Todd Van Natta, who operated businesses in Columbus and Seymour, was charged by federal indictment last week with 10 counts of bank fraud and three counts of wire fraud, according to U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana Joseph Hogsett.

Van Natta, president and manager of Seymour-based Van Natta Asset Management LLC and several related companies, is accused of devising a scheme to defraud financial institutions to obtain large sums of money under false pretenses. According to a statement from Hogsett, loans occurring between March 2007 and 2009  exceeded $10 million.

The indictment accuses Van Natta of preparing and submitting false documents, including phony income tax returns, to obtain loans from banks and credit unions in Bartholomew, Decatur, Monroe, Morgan and Washington counties.

The loans included $3.8 million for an 83-room River House hotel in Evansville. Less than four years after the loan, the hotel sold for $475,000 at a sheriff’s sale after foreclosure, according to the Evansville Courier & Press.

Hogsett said other loans involving Van Natta’s businesses included $2.1 million for properties in Seymour and $3.1 million for properties in Fort Wayne. Van Natta also received a $100,000 loan to buy a 1970 Cessna aircraft and a loan for $550,000 for a 2007 fantasy yacht.

Van Natta also is accused of defrauding a Utah investor of thousands of dollars, ostensibly for the purchase and upgrade of an aircraft Van Natta listed for sale. Hogsett’s office said Van Natta never owned the plane.  

If convicted, Van Natta faces up to 30 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count of bank fraud and up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count of wire fraud.

Hogsett’s statement said prosecutors will seek to recover assets if Van Natta is convicted. The charges resulted from an investigation that included the FBI and Internal Revenue Service.  



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  1. Especially I would like to see all the republican voting patriotic good ole boys to stop and understand that the wars they have been volunteering for all along (especially the past decade at least) have not been for God & Jesus etc no far from it unless you think George Washington's face on the US dollar is god (and we know many do). When I saw the movie about Chris Kyle, I thought wow how many Hoosiers are just like this guy, out there taking orders to do the nasty on the designated bad guys, sometimes bleeding and dying, sometimes just serving and coming home to defend a system that really just views them as reliable cannon fodder. Maybe if the Christians of the red states would stop volunteering for the imperial legions and begin collecting welfare instead of working their butts off, there would be a change in attitude from the haughty professorial overlords that tell us when democracy is allowed and when it isn't. To come home from guarding the borders of the sandbox just to hear if they want the government to protect this country's borders then they are racists and bigots. Well maybe the professorial overlords should gird their own loins for war and fight their own battles in the sandbox. We can see what kind of system this really is from lawsuits like this and we can understand who it really serves. NOT US.... I mean what are all you Hoosiers waving the flag for, the right of the president to start wars of aggression to benefit the Saudis, the right of gay marriage, the right for illegal immigrants to invade our country, and the right of the ACLU to sue over displays of Baby Jesus? The right of the 1 percenters to get richer, the right of zombie banks to use taxpayer money to stay out of bankruptcy? The right of Congress to start a pissing match that could end in WWIII in Ukraine? None of that crud benefits us. We should be like the Amish. You don't have to go far from this farcical lawsuit to find the wise ones, they're in the buggies in the streets not far away....

  2. Moreover, we all know that the well heeled ACLU has a litigation strategy of outspending their adversaries. And, with the help of the legal system well trained in secularism, on top of the genuinely and admittedly secular 1st amendment, they have the strategic high ground. Maybe Christians should begin like the Amish to withdraw their services from the state and the public and become themselves a "people who shall dwell alone" and foster their own kind and let the other individuals and money interests fight it out endlessly in court. I mean, if "the people" don't see how little the state serves their interests, putting Mammon first at nearly every turn, then maybe it is time they wake up and smell the coffee. Maybe all the displays of religiosity by American poohbahs on down the decades have been a mask of piety that concealed their own materialistic inclinations. I know a lot of patriotic Christians don't like that notion but I entertain it more and more all the time.

  3. If I were a judge (and I am not just a humble citizen) I would be inclined to make a finding that there was no real controversy and dismiss them. Do we allow a lawsuit every time someone's feelings are hurt now? It's preposterous. The 1st amendment has become a sword in the hands of those who actually want to suppress religious liberty according to their own backers' conception of how it will serve their own private interests. The state has a duty of impartiality to all citizens to spend its judicial resources wisely and flush these idiotic suits over Nativity Scenes down the toilet where they belong... however as Christians we should welcome them as they are the very sort of persecution that separates the sheep from the wolves.

  4. What about the single mothers trying to protect their children from mentally abusive grandparents who hide who they truly are behind mounds and years of medication and have mentally abused their own children to the point of one being in jail and the other was on drugs. What about trying to keep those children from being subjected to the same abuse they were as a child? I can understand in the instance about the parent losing their right and the grandparent having raised the child previously! But not all circumstances grant this being OKAY! some of us parents are trying to protect our children and yes it is our God given right to make those decisions for our children as adults!! This is not just black and white and I will fight every ounce of this to get denied

  5. Mr Smith the theory of Christian persecution in Indiana has been run by the Indiana Supreme Court and soundly rejected there is no such thing according to those who rule over us. it is a thought crime to think otherwise.