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.
- Swallow, Shurtleff arrested on multiple felony counts related to alleged corruption
- House committee releases Swallow report; names of Sens. Lee, Reid appear in county attorneys’ investigation
- House probe into former Attorney General John Swallow releases findings
- Swallow resigns, says Utah House drove him from office
- Lee’s 2010 campaign received unlawful donations, indicted businessman claims
- Government heightens pressure on Jeremy Johnson
- Philanthropist Jeremy Johnson Arrested by IRS on New Charge of Mail Fraud
- Feds May Put a Stop to Memorial Day Weekend Plans for Jeremy Johnson
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