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Former Vann's CEO faces more than 200 federal criminal charges - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Former Vann's CEO faces more than 200 federal criminal charges

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George Manlove, the former CEO of Vann's, pleaded not guilty to more than 200 federal criminal counts George Manlove, the former CEO of Vann's, pleaded not guilty to more than 200 federal criminal counts
In the more than 40-page document, a grand jury accuses former Manlove of more than 120 counts of wire fraud, more than 80 counts of money laundering, and conspiracy, bank fraud, bankruptcy fraud, and making false statements. In the more than 40-page document, a grand jury accuses former Manlove of more than 120 counts of wire fraud, more than 80 counts of money laundering, and conspiracy, bank fraud, bankruptcy fraud, and making false statements.
MISSOULA -

George Manlove, the former CEO of Vann's, pleaded not guilty to more than 200 federal criminal counts including fraud, conspiracy, and money laundering stemming from his management of Vann's, a former Montana-owned appliance and electronics store.

Manlove entered the plea this week in U.S. District Court. 

In the more than 40-page document, a grand jury accuses Manlove of more than 120 counts of wire fraud, more than 80 counts of money laundering, and conspiracy, bank fraud, bankruptcy fraud, and making false statements.

Manlove is accused of defrauding Vann's employees, two banks, the Vann's bankruptcy estate, other creditors, lenders, and former employees. 

He was hired as the CEO in May of 2006, with court documents indicating he was required to keep the board informed of all expenditures and keep accurate, detailed financial records.

Instead, the conspiracy charges outline how Manlove and uncharged co-conspirator and former Vann's CFO Paul Nisbet concealed the true financial condition of the company to hide what they were really doing with the money.

The documents list unauthorized personal expenses including club memberships and family trips. 

Prosecutors claim Manlove had Vann's pay thousands of dollars in tuition for his master's degree and traded Vann's merchandise for things like diamond earrings and a Rolex watch.

Prosecutors also claim Manlove formed third-party shell companies to get loans to buy property then lease them back to Vann's in "lease back" schemes.

Court documents show that in July 2011, Manlove emailed Vann's managers to tell them the company was in financial peril and facing imminent bankruptcy but claim he continued to spend company money without authorization.

Manlove is set to return to court next week for a pre-trial conference and if convicted on the charges  he faces millions of dollars in fines and years in prison.

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