Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway announced the guilty plea and sentencing of the former owner of an automobile and recreational vehicle consignment business in Louisville.
According to a report by Surfky.com, Jefferson Circuit Judge Brian Edwards sentenced 55-year-old Marshall Smith III to five years in prison, to be probated after paying approximately $300,000 in restitution, after he pled guilty to defrauding more than a dozen customers who either sold vehicles by way of consignment or purchased vehicles for sale on consignment at Tinker Toys in Louisville.
Smith pled guilty today to 11 counts of theft by failure to make required disposition over $10,000 (Class C felonies), two counts of theft by deception over $500 (Class D felonies) and three counts of defrauding secured creditors in an amount over $10,000 (Class D felony). As part of Smith’s probation, he was ordered to pay restitution to all of his victims. Smith made an initial payment of $42,000 to be distributed by Jefferson Circuit Court Clerk’s Office.
The guilty plea follows an investigation by Conway’s Office of Consumer Protection prompted by consumer complaints about the business. Prosecution of the case was handled by the Office of Jefferson County Commonwealth’s Attorney Thomas B. Wine.
“Mr. Smith used the funds he held in trust for others for his own personal benefit,” Conway said. “I appreciate the consumers who stepped forward to work with my Office to put a stop to this scam and I am pleased that the sentence includes payment of restitution to the victims.”
Between December 10, 2010, and November 1, 2011, Smith entered into at least 11 separate cases where he received in excess of $10,000; at least two sales transactions where he received in excess of $500; and three separate sales transactions where he received an amount in excess of $100. Smith did not use the funds received to pay off liens, tender payment to customers who consigned vehicles after the vehicles were sold, nor did he provide titles to customers who purchased vehicles from Tinker Toys.