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. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.