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Attorney General agrees to return Durham campaign funds

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Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller has agreed to return $11,000 in campaign contributions from indicted financier Tim Durham.

Fair Finance bankruptcy trustee Brian A. Bash submitted the settlement on Wednesday for court approval.

Bash is attempting to recover some of the more than $200 million Fair Finance owes to 5,200 Ohio investors.

Akron, Ohio-based Fair Finance Co. had been run by Durham as part of what law enforcement officials have called the largest corporate fraud case in Indiana history. Durham and two partners were arrested in March and charged with 12 felony counts.

In August 2010, when the FBI was still investigating Durham’s business dealings, Zoeller said his campaign treasurer, attorney Andrew Buroker, created a segregated account for the $11,000.

“Like many of the others that have settled, we had a relatively small amount,” Buroker told the Indianapolis Business Journal Thursday morning. “It was a cost-benefit decision to settle it very simply and very inexpensively rather than going into court and litigating it.”

The trustee’s settlement with Zoeller follows agreements he reached Sept. 12 with three local political groups. The settlements with the Marion County Republican Central Committee, Greater Indianapolis Republican Finance Committee and the Committee to Elect Lawrence Mayor Paul Ricketts total more than $60,000.

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels and former Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi have not returned campaign contributions from Durham that they say have already been spent.

Daniels and Brizzi each received about $200,000 from Durham.

David Proano, an attorney for Bash, said earlier this month that the trustee is discussing a settlement with Daniels and Brizzi.

This story originally ran on IBJ.com Sept. 22. The Indianapolis Business Journal is a sister publication of Indiana Lawyer.

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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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