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Recently Dean Sweetman has been commenting on C3 Church Watch. He is the regional director and overseer of the C3 Churches in the Americas. You can read some of his responses to the C3 Asheville scandal in the comment sections of these articles.
Before reading the below newspaper articles, please familiarise yourself with the background of the scandal that C3 Pastor Nick Dimitris was involved in and how the C3 Church leadership reacted to him.
C3 Asheville Scandal – C3 Pastor Facing Prison (Part 1)
C3 Asheville Scandal – C3 Pastor “Pleads Guilty In Bank Fraud Case” (Part 2)
C3 Asheville Scandal – Sweetmans Do Nothing Against Fraudulent C3 Pastor? (Part 3)
Ask yourself this question – in light of Nick Dimitris being charged guilty in 2011, has Pastor and ‘Executive Regional C3 Americas Overseer’ Dean Sweetman handled himself well on this blog and over the scandal in Asheville? Have your say below.
The Citizen Times Reported,
2 plead guilty in Seven Falls case
ASHEVILLE — Two more defendants charged with conspiracy in an elaborate scheme to illegally obtain more than $23 million to forestall failure of the bankrupt Seven Falls development pleaded guilty this week.
Real estate investors Avery Ted “Buck” Cashion III and Raymond “Ray” Chapman Jr. each face up to five years in prison and $250,000 fines when they are sentenced, according to court records.
The defendants pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Asheville to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States. Terms of the plea agreement with prosecutors remain sealed.
Prosecutors allege Cashion and Chapman were involved in a scheme with Seven Falls developer Keith Vinson to have “straw borrowers” buy lots in the development they did not intend to repay. Vinson was unable to borrow more money because of rules designed to limit banks’ exposure to any one borrower.
Vinson and the other remaining three defendants – accountant George M. Gabler, former Pisgah Community Bank President Thomas “Ted” Durham and retired appraiser Aaron Ollis – are scheduled to go on trial Oct. 7.
Source: Clarke Morrison, 2 plead guilty in Seven Falls case, The Citizen Times, http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2013130920016, 20/09/2013. (Accessed 05/10/2013.)
The Citizen Times also recently reported,
Vinson arraigned on Seven Falls indictment
New Seven Falls indictment reflects co-conspirators’ pleas
ASHEVILLE — Developer Keith Vinson was arraigned Thursday on charges contained in a new grand jury indictment alleging an elaborate conspiracy to obtain more than $23 million in illegal loans to prop up his failing Seven Falls development.
The indictment replaces one filed last year as a way to streamline Vinson’s trial, which is set to begin Monday in U.S. District Court in Asheville, prosecutors said in court papers.
The superseding bill reduces the number of criminal counts from 48 to 13. The charges include conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States, misapplication of bank funds, wire fraud and money laundering.
Some charges carry penalties of as much as 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.
Prosecutors said the new indictment reflects the fact that all of Vinson’s 10 alleged co-conspirators have pleaded guilty.
“In order to avoid confusing the jury,” the indictment reorders the remaining counts and updates the status of the other defendants, court records state. Since the document doesn’t add any new counts or “substantive allegations,” the government believes there’s no need to delay the trial.
According to the 27-page indictment, Vinson and others “devised and executed various schemes to defraud federally insured banks and others to forestall the failure of their luxury residential development and golf resort in Henderson County, North Carolina, known as Seven Falls.”
Three defendants who had been scheduled to be tried along with Vinson entered guilty pleas last week. Former Pisgah Community Bank President Thomas “Ted” Durham Jr. and retired appraiser Aaron Ollis each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States. Accountant George M. Gabler pleaded guilty to withholding information about a crime.
Magistrate Judge Dennis Howell told Durham and Ollis they each face maximum sentences of five years in prison, while Gabler could spend up to three years behind bars.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Don Gast said that as part of their plea agreements with prosecutors, the defendants agreed to assist the government in the case.
Prosecutors allege Vinson and other defendants were involved in a scheme to have “straw borrowers” buy lots in the development with loans they did not intend to repay. Vinson was unable to borrow more money because of rules designed to limit banks’ exposure to any one borrower.
Seven Falls filed for bankruptcy in 2009. The luxury development was planned to accommodate 900 homes and an Arnold Palmer-designed golf course on 1,400 acres, potentially adding $1.25 billion to Henderson County’s tax base.
Weeds have overtaken the golf course, and overgrowth has made it hard to see the pro shop, one of the few structures on the property, which has suffered severe erosion.
Real estate investors Avery Ted “Buck” Cashion III and Raymond “Ray” Chapman Jr. pleaded guilty last month to one count each of conspiracy to defraud the United States.
Durham and former Bank of Asheville President George Gordon “Buddy” Greenwood “conspired to conceal the risks posed by Seven Falls-related loans from their shareholders, auditors and regulators,” court records state.
Greenwood pleaded guilty to bank fraud charges and was sentenced in May 2012 to four years in federal prison. According to court records, Greenwood was involved in illegal loans to Vinson totaling nearly $6.8 million.
Problems with Seven Falls played a key role in the fall of the Bank of Asheville. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. shut down the bank in January 2011 and transferred its assets to Troy-based First Bank because of big losses on loans.
Four other people also have pleaded guilty to being involved in schemes to make or receive straw loans. They are former Pisgah Community Bank officials Robert Craig Gourlay and David G. Smith, minister and real estate investor Nicholas Dimitris and former banker Andrew Quinn Hager.
In the early 1980s, Vinson served just more than two years in prison in Florida for felony convictions for forgery, obtaining property under false pretenses and grand theft.
He was convicted in 1982 in Jacksonville, Fla., according to records from the Duval County Clerk of Court, the Clay County Clerk of Court and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Vinson was sentenced to five years and spent 25 months in a Florida prison, receiving parole in February 1984.
Source: Clarke Morrison, Vinson arraigned on Seven Falls indictment…, The Citizen Times, http://www.citizen-times.com/article/20131004/NEWS/310040036/, 03/10/2013. (Accessed 05/10/2013.)