Iraqi Dinar: Two Men Plead Not Guilty to Wire Fraud Charges
|September 17, 2014||Filled under Iraqi Dinar News|
Iraqi Dinar News -
Two men charged in separate cases with committing wire fraud pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Sioux Falls.
Former University of Sioux Falls employee Brent Alan Fowler, 52, is accused of using the names of students and faculty to secure payroll checks that ultimately were routed to his own bank account.
He faces 20 counts of wire fraud in U.S. District Court in South Dakota for the alleged thefts, which took place between June 2011 and July 2012.
The payroll deposits totaled more than $25,000, according to Fowler’s indictment.
On Monday, he pleaded not guilty to every count and was released on a promise to appear for further hearings.
His lawyer, Mark O’Leary, told Judge John Simko that his client didn’t have a passport, was attending counseling “at my insistence,” and that he’d been advised of the potential penalty for failure to appear.
The second man to see Simko on fraud charges Tuesday afternoon, Eugene Drong, 71, is accused of collecting $5,000 deposits from almost two dozen people who had hoped the deposits would secure them large business development loans.
The deposits were collected between July 2013 and May.
After being indicted last week, Drong told the Argus Leader that he hadn’t scammed anyone.
He’s invested in coal mines and Iraqi Dinar currency, he said, and was preparing to collect huge sums that would fund the loans.
Drong said he’d paid back some investors, but that most still wanted their projects funded and didn’t want their money back. He also said last week that he might receive a payment from coal investments as soon as this week.
Drong had a court-appointed lawyer Tuesday, however.
Simko said he was aware of Drong’s statements about a payment and noted it appeared that the payments had not materialized.
“That expected income is not reflected in your financial affidavit, and you are not disqualified from having court-appointed counsel,” Simko said.
Drong pleaded not guilty to 21 counts of wire fraud. Like Fowler, he was released on his own recognizance.
Each count of wire fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison.
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