The evidence. OTC letter LR-07-170, authorizing $13,845,000 in tax credits for an unqualified $45,400,000 investment claim in Lindmark Outdoor Advertising states:
Note: This is presented, not as an isolated case, rather as were two recent cases (parking garage and nursing home), representative of 95% of the more than 125 "determination letters" the Oklahoma Tax Commission issued allowing fraudulent claims and the loss of approximately $500 million in tax credits. The 95% of the cases reveal the same fundamental scheme, "misrepresenting the amount invested."
This is more than only stealing from the public. For the fraud to work requires robbing from the Venture (Business Investment Venture) needing the investment to create jobs and grow. How that occurs is the scheme operators, invest only 10 to 15%, of the amount claimed, then take out loans, using the Venture's assets to secure the loan. Claim the tax credits, and leave the Venture with, as in this case, a mere one-tenth, after hefty fees, of the claimed investment, and saddled with a huge loan. The results clearly seen in the continuous train of failures. All so state officials and their cronies can enrich themselves at the public expense!
It would serve both the public and the Venture, far better, for the state to write a check directly to the Venture. This would increase the money the Venture's received by 2 to 4 times, creating 3 to 5 times the economic growth and jobs. At the same cost to the public.
To illustrate the extent of disregard for law, here is a partial list of criteria this case failed to qualify:
$6,150,000, less hefty fees, was all the Venture received as a legitimate investment. Something clearly seen by comparing with an ordinary stock investment. Only the $6,150,000, less hefty fees, was available for business growth, and job creation; and qualified for no more than $1,845,000 in tax credits. Leaving some to reap $12,000,000 in fraudulent profits. To add insult to injury, or in this case, greed to greed, the Capco and Fund skimmed their fees as a percentage of the falsely claimed $45,400,000, further reducing the real investment by nearly eight times the normal Capco rate.
It is important to note, not only is this greed a form of embezzlement from the public; it so handicaps the Ventures, there is little hope for success. That is evidenced, by more than 5 years of failures, with no documented evidence of jobs or success.
An examination of the plan clearly shows the remainder of the $45,400,000, or $39,250,000 was a loan the Venture was left strapped with; to pay interest and repay the mortgage. The $39,250,000 was never intended to be a legitimate or qualifying investment, but fraudulent.
Part of the cover up is hiding behind a misinterpretation of that part of the law that says the investors may use borrowed money to invest. The stipulation is the investors are, at risk, on the hook for the loan. Not the Venture. That is not the same as what is occurring, which shell games, like "overlapping call and put options," are used to shift the responsibility for the loan to the Ventures receiving the so called investment. Leaving the Ventures underfunded, and strapped with the investor's loans.
Financial shell game using "overlapping call and put options," reveals one of the methods used to eliminate risk and allow those receiving the tax credits free to walk with 200% profit away, free and clear, after receiving the tax, which could be within days.
More coverup. Another illustration of OTC's flagrant violations of title 68 O.S. 205 C.27 a, b, c; is found in OTC denying the public access to information that would reveal the fraud. This is done through both unlawful redaction (blacking out information) and false reporting. In this case OTC used unlawful redaction to hide the fact the Capco was an ineligible out of state company; then reported the name of an in state company, REI New Markets Investment, LLC, Durant, as the Capco. When in fact evidence suggest REI New Markets Investment, Durant, was only serving the role of the Fund (Investment Fund), and not the Capco.
The Capco (Capital Company) is the key player. The Fund (Investment Fund) is a separate legal entity setup solely to raise funds, which is passed on to the Capco to invest and manage. Once the funds are transferred to the Capco, a Fund is typically closed. It is the Capco that is required to meet Oklahoma's eligibility requirements, including being an Oklahoma entity, and providing oversight and mentor the investment to success. View more.