Trial date set in Jeremy Johnson case

SALT LAKE CITY – Jeremy Johnson and four of his associates will have their day in court next year.

On Tuesday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul M. Warner scheduled a four-week long jury trial for Johnson, as well as Scott Leavitt, Bryce Payne, Ryan Riddle, and Loyd Johnston, starting March 2, 2015. Each is accused of multiple counts of felony communications fraud connected to Johnson’s Internet company iWorks

Each man is accused of bilking costumers out of millions of dollars through iWorks. Costumers were told they could access government grants that could help reduce debt, stop foreclosures, help with home business startups, pay utility bills and even buy Christmas presents, among other things.

According to court documents, the way clients accessed the grants was through a free CD said to contain “everything you need to know to obtain your government grant.” Consumers just had to pay $2.29 for the shipping cost.

Federal prosecutors allege consumers discovered the CDs were not what they expected and that their credit and debit cards were being charged – not only for the shipping fees, but a monthly membership fee as well.

The excessive charge-backs would lead banks to shut down iWorks merchant accounts; yet Johnson allegedly had a series of shell companies created in which new accounts were created in order to continue charging consumers.

In March 2013, the five men were hit with 86 counts of communications fraud by the U.S. attorneys.

As reported by The Salt Lake Tribune, Johnson contends iWorks employees were told to create the so-called shell companies by bank agents.

Johnson is unable to discuss details of the case due to a court-imposed gag-order.

While Johnson’s own case has once again been highlighted in the press, his name has been routinely mentioned in cases of alleged corruption and ethical misconduct surrounding former Utah Attorneys General Mark Shurtleff and John Swallow.

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Email: mkessler@stgnews.com

Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2014, all rights reserved.

 

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5 Comments

  • The Rest Of The Story August 7, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    The past few years, I’ve talked to a number of people who seem to believe this guy is innocent–a victim of a government conspiracy.
    I’m left shaking my head in amazement.
    Then I see that big white temple in the middle of town and remember that most of these people here are brainwashed by a mind-numbing cult and don’t have any kind of clue what reality is anyway.

  • Brian August 7, 2014 at 3:43 pm

    That entire industry is corrupt. I was happy to see a billboard in northern Utah saying “Don’t believe the coaching profit promises”. People would be mortified if they knew just how good these scammers are at separating people from their money over the phone. Within minutes they’ll know everything about your finances, right down to how many credit cards you have an what the available balances are. If you have a total of $12,000 in available credit, their “coaching package” magically costs $11,500. If you only had $6,000 the exact same thing would cost $5,500. What is it worth? Exactly $0. They’ll keep you happy and give you “support” just long enough that you can’t cancel, then you’re a stranger or worse to them. The worst part is the “high” the salesman get off this, above and beyond the ridiculous pay. Of course, the industry is full of drugs, too, so there are plenty of other “highs” as well. Johnson is guilty as can be.

  • Good Mission August 8, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    Has Johnson bribed enough politicians to keep him out of jail? Will more politicians like Swallow go down with the ship? Will the Utah good ole boy system prevail in protecting one of their corrupt own?

  • Miss Peller August 8, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    Beware those wily costumers! The costume industry is rife with fraud! If you’re a costumer and customer, be exceptionally careful! 😉

  • G August 12, 2014 at 1:58 am

    We’ll see. In the beginning, the charges were for defrauding customers, then they switched to bank fraud. Setting up new companies and new accounts to continue processing isn’t illegal so far as I know, and yes, he was instructed by the banks to do it. They were making money hand over fist as well, you think they wanted him to shut down? A gag order…why? And how can the government sieze and sell this guy’s assets without a trial let alone a conviction? This will get interesting

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