Brandt found guilty of taking nearly $2 million

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By: Elaine Forman

Richard “Rick” Brandt, 62, of Miles City was being held in the Custer County Detention Center on a $500,000 cash bond Thursday afternoon after being found guilty in the Custer County Courthouse of taking close to $2 million dollars from 18 people by deceptive practices.

According to 16th Judicial District Court records and testimony in the four-day trial, Brandt told investors they were investing in flipping houses, but he used the money to pay for personal purchases and to pay other investors, and investors lost most of their money.

A 12-person jury deliberated a little over an hour before coming back with a guilty verdict Thursday afternoon on six felony charges: exploitation of elderly persons, theft by embezzlement, failure to register with the state as a salesman of securities, failure to registering those securities, fraudulent practices and operating a pyramid promotional scheme (also known as a Ponzi scheme)…

After the trial, Custer County Special Attorney Brett Olin said: “There’s no justice. There’s accountability, but there’s no justice,”  because the victims did not get their money back.

“The jury did the right thing,” he added.

Olin is an attorney for the Montana Commission of Securities and Insurance Office (also known as the auditor’s office) and prosecuted the case with Glade.

Read more at the Miles City Star