The former developer of the Kenwood Towne Place project was in court on Thursday.
Matt Daniels of Bear Creek Capital, LLC was indicted on 25 federal charges, including one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, one count of bank fraud, seven counts of mail fraud, seven counts of wire fraud, eight counts of money laundering and one count of obstruction.
Federal officials outlined the details of the indictment in a report released in November.
"If you lie, cheat, and steal and it's in a manner that the Federal Government is involved, then know this: that we are going to conduct an investigation, we are going to team up with partners, and we are going to look to make sure justice is done," FBI agent Edward Hanko said Friday.
Daniels' attorney Ben Dusing says his client is innocent of the charges, that there was never an intent to defraud, and that Daniels denies receiving the loan draws cited by the U.S. Attorney's office.
On Thursday, Daniels said he was not guilty of the charges. He is currently not being held in jail, but had to submit his passport.
"If the United States government indicted every contractor that had a project go sideways our prisons would be quite full. That's not criminal and that's what happened here," Dusing argued on behalf of his client.
Federal officials allege Daniels transferred more than 2.8 million resulting from bank fraud out of one account and used it for his own interests including purchasing jewelry and paying $500,000 dollars to a yacht manufacturer.
"The government believes funds were diverted, we come to a different conclusion and we're confident in our accounting," Dusing told FOX19 Friday.
Dusing says his client looks forward to telling his side of the story in court.
The project stalled after contractors accused Bear Creek of not paying them. The development was sold in July from Bank of America to Phillips Edison. The new owners told FOX19 they did not wish to comment on the project at this time.
This indictment follows the indictment of the chief financial officer of Kenwood Towne Place, LLC, Tina Schmidt, who was charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud in September.
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