Tuesday, November 24, 2009
FBI Raids Tim Durham's Offices
Watch the local politicians start running for cover. The FBI raided the offices of one of their biggest benefactors, Indianapolis business tycoon Tim Durham, this afternoon. FBI agents began carting off files from Durham's top floor offices in the Chase Tower. A separate raid took place in Akron, Ohio where Fair Finance has an office. They're investigating Durham's Ohio-based Fair Finance Company and Obsidian Enterprises. FBI agents are remaining mum about the purpose behind the execution of search warrants on Durham's business today. This Advance Indiana entry on an IBJ expose' by Greg Andrews last month will give you a pretty good indication of what federal agents are investigating. See also the following possible related entries here and here. According to a recent filing with Ohio securities regulators, Durham's Fair Finance proposed a new securities offering that raised a lot of red flags in light of the IBJ report. Ohio security regulators have been dragging their feet on taking action to protect investors despite ample warning signs conveyed to them by interested parties; however, Ohio officials are holding up approval of this latest offering until questions are answered. That may set off a chain reaction as Durham's company may have desparately needed those new funds to pay off old debts. Durham is shown above at a lavish Halloween Party he recently hosted at his new Hollywood mansion for National Lampoon, another one of his company's that has faced securities fraud allegations. Durham is dressed up as the Mad Hatter character from "Alice In Wonderland." The IBJ has an online update on this developing story here. Political fallout analysis: No politician is closer to Tim Durham than Marion Co. Prosecutor Carl Brizzi. New disclosures of the extent of that relationship that will emerge in the coming days will probably end his political career. Durham recently hosted a fundraiser for Marion Co. GOP sheriff candidate Tim Motsinger. Aspiring Democratic mayoral hopeful, Brian Williams, is a founding member and sat on the board of Obsidian Enterprises. Reporters may soon begin asking some local politicians "what do you know and when did you know it?" Look for campaigns to begin purging themselves of Durham campaign contributions in short order. Brizzi has pocketed more than $150,000 in campaign contributions from Durham.