Owensboro Man Guilty of Defrauding Elderly Couple of More Than $200,000 in Retirement Savings
Money was Spent on Personal Expenses Including Hummer Vehicle and Motorcycle
|U.S. Attorney’s Office February 27, 2014|
OWENSBORO, KY—An Owensboro, Kentucky man pleaded guilty this week in United States District Court to mail fraud in connection with defrauding over $200,000 from an elderly Daviess County, Kentucky couple and agreed to pay restitution in the amount of $220,000, announced David J. Hale, United States Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky.
Robert K. Gray, age 49, admitted to defrauding the couple of their retirement fund, by making material misrepresentations about an investment opportunity in the defendant’s construction company, after home improvements to the couple’s residence in excess of $300,000 were completed, an amount that is more than double the assessed value of the property.
Specifically, between January 13, 2010 through August 5, 2010, C.R. paid $338,000 to the defendant Robert Gray and to his brother (not a defendant in the indictment) for renovations to his home which, in 2013, according to the property valuation records kept by the City of Owensboro, was valued at $148,000.
Further, between July 10, 2010 and December 17, 2010, Gray is charged with devising a scheme to defraud C.R. and U.R. of their GE retirement fund in the amount of $220,000. Specifically, Gray asked C.R. to invest in his start-up company, Unlimited Constructors, to fund commercial construction projects Gray said the company had in Madisonville, Kentucky, and on Highway 54 in Owensboro. Gray promised C.R. a substantial return on his investment and promised C.R. he would get all of his investment back, with interest, when in truth and in fact, Gray knew Unlimited Constructors did not have construction projects for a shopping center in Madisonville, Kentucky, or for any commercial development on Highway 54 in Owensboro.
It was further part of the scheme to defraud that an Unlimited Constructors bank account was opened by defendant Gray at U.S. Bank on September 27, 2010. According to the indictment, none of the funds obtained from C.R. were used in construction projects in Madisonville or Owensboro. According to bank records, the account was almost entirely funded by checks drawn on C.R.’s retirement fund, made payable to C.R. and U.R. Gray allegedly used the funds to pay for personal expenses and to purchase vehicles including a 2006 Hummer for $25,000 the day after the account was opened and, approximately two weeks later, to purchase a 2006 Kawasaki motorcycle for $5,000.
If convicted at trial, Gray faced 120 years in prison, a $1,500,000 fine, and a three-year period of supervised release. Gray is scheduled for sentencing before Chief Judge Joseph H. McKinley, Jr. on May 22, 2014, in U.S. District Court in Owensboro.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Marisa Ford and was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).