A quartet of executives from DBSI, the now defunct Meridian property management firm, were indicted Wednesday on a laundry list of charges including securities, bank and wire fraud, and interstate transportation of property taken by fraud.
DBSI's co-founder and CEO Douglas Swenson was indicted along with three of his top executives, Mark Ellison, Jeremy Swenson and David Swenson.
Federal prosecutors said that beginning in 2007 and continuing through November 2008, the executives claimed that the company had a net worth in excess of $105 million, while they were well aware that DBSI's business activities were "universally unprofitable." The indictment alleges that the conspiracy continued until DBSI filed for bankruptcy in November 2008.
"Defrauding investors is like a 'house of cards,'" said IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Boyd. "The underlying structure can fall apart at any time leaving many investors in financial ruin."
Among the hundreds of commercial properties managed by DBSI were the Plantation Shopping Center, the Northgate Shopping Center and Broadway Plaza, all in Boise.
Each of the 83 counts are punishable by up to hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines and multiple years in federal prison.
The case was investigated by the IRS and FBI.
You can read the full indictment here. DBSI_Indictment.pdf