Miles City man sentenced to prison for stealing $1.9 million from elderly

Kyle Schmauch In The News

By: Aja Goare

The Miles City man convicted of stealing close to $2 million from elderly victims in a Ponzi scheme will spend decades behind bars.

Richard Brandt, 62, was sentenced Monday in Custer County District Court to 60 years in prison for six counts of elder exploitation, operating a Ponzi scheme, theft by embezzlement, and securities fraud.

The judge suspended 20 years of the sentence.

Brandt’s sentence is the lengthiest prison sentence ever given to a defendant prosecuted by the State Auditor’s Office, according to Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Matt Rosendale.

“Every investor was elderly, mentally impaired, or otherwise vulnerable to exploitation,” said Rosendale. “Every victim was a personal friend or acquaintance of Brandt. It’s incredibly important that Montanans be very careful when they invest, even if it’s with someone they know and trust.”

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