(Brookville, Ind.) - Two men accused of scamming investors in Dearborn and Franklin counties out of millions of dollars are still waiting to go to trial.
Jerry A. Smith, of Brookville, and Jasen Snelling, of Cincinnati, allegedly scammed more than three dozen investors in Ohio and Indiana between January 2007 and March 2010.
They were charged with securities fraud and theft in Franklin County in December of 2010, followed by similar charges being issued in Dearborn County in June 2011.
According to the Indiana Secretary of State’s office at the time the charges were filed, the duo’s unregistered securities investment scam resulted in Dearborn County residents losing more than $3 million. Franklin County residents lost over $1 million.
The men used the victims’ funds for personal expenses instead of investments.
The Brookville American-Democrat reports Smith’s attorney, Robert Hammerle of Indianapolis, recently filed a motion in Franklin Circuit Court II asking for a continuance of the trial because a plea may be in the works for his client.
Franklin County Prosecutor Melvin Wilhelm has filed a motion asking that Smith’s continuance be denied and the trial be rescheduled as soon as possible.
“The charges were filed in 2010. We can’t wait for the federal government to see what they are doing. We need to move the case forward and give the victims a resolution. It’s been going on long enough, and it is time to move it forward,” Wilhelm told the newspaper, adding he will seek restitution for the victims if Smith is convicted in Franklin County.
Smith and Snelling are also the subjects of a federal investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, although federal prosecutors would not confirm or deny they had a case against the men.
Hammerle said a resolution of all charges against his client may be accomplished through plea negotiations.
Wilhelm said he was not aware of the federal investigation until he saw Smith’s motion for continuance.