Thursday, November 2, 2023

Timber!!! (Ex)Baker Boyz Sentenced

The Baker Boyz were sentenced in federal court on Halloween for their roles as promoters in the Lamar Adams timber fraud.  

Seawright pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy in U.S. District Court.  

The attorney waived indictment and accepted a bill of information.  The bill of information states Seawright conspired with co-defendant Brent Alexander to sell phony timber investments from 2011 to 2018 through their company, Alexander Seawright Timber Fund, LLC (ASTF).   The bill states: 

It was part of the agreement and conspiracy that JON DARRELL SEAWRIGHT and TED BRENT ALEXANDER, did knowingly and intentionally participate in a scheme and artifice to defraud investors by soliciting millions of dollars of funds under false pretenses and failing to use investors' funds as promised.  Co-conspirators SEAWRIGHT and ALEXANDER represented to investors that ASTF was in the business of loaning funds to a "timber broker" to buy timber rights from landowners and then to sell the timber rights to lumber mills at a higher price. SEAWRIGHT and ALEXANDER promised ASTF investors a return of 10% or more over twelve or thirteen months on each unit of invested capital.


 U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves decreed Seawright will go to prison: 

Sentence of the Court: Count 1 - 12-months and 1 day of imprisonment, with a two-year term of supervised release to follow. Ordered Restitution in the amount of $977,044.52, which is payable jointly and severally with Defendant Ted Brent Alexander, and $100.00 special assessment fee. The Court granted Government's ores tenus motion to dismiss the remaining charges against the Defendant. The Defendant was ordered to self-report to the designated BOP facility on January 8, 2024, by 12 noon.

Alexander will avoid prison.   The Court docket states: 

Sentence of the Court: Count 1 - 60-month term of Probation, with the first two years being on home confinement. Ordered Restitution in the amount of $977,044.52, which is payable jointly and severally with Defendant Jon Seawright, and $100.00 special assessment fee.

The Baker Boyz didn't inspect any properties related to the investments nor did they verify the timber deeds were indeed valid.  In short, all they cared about was cashing checks, investments be damned.  They also misled investors on their compensation for promoting the investments.  An April Justice Department press release spells out what took place: 

Alexander admitted that between 2011 and 2018, he and a co-conspirator participated in a scheme to defraud investors by soliciting millions of dollars under false pretenses and failing to use investor funds as promised. Alexander and his co-conspirator represented to investors that they were in the business of loaning funds to a “timber broker” to buy timber rights from landowners and then to sell the timber rights to lumber mills at a higher price. Alexander and his co-conspirator promised investors a return of 10% or more over twelve or thirteen months on each unit of invested capital. Alexander and his co-conspirator  represented to their investors and led their investors to believe that Alexander and his co-conspirator were inspecting each tract of land and were vetting each document, deed, and contract in support of their investments. These promises and representations were material in that they were intended to cause investors to believe that their investments were secured by valid assets and to believe that the financial incentives and interests of Alexander and his co-conspirator aligned with those of the investors. In fact, Alexander and his co-conspirator failed to inspect each property related to the timber rights underlying each investment, and they failed to verify each executed lumber mill agreement related to each investment. Alexander and his co-conspirator made few or no such inquiries, and if Alexander and his co-conspirator had made such inquiries, they would have discovered that the timber deeds, lumber mill agreements, and related documents had been falsified and were not valid.

Alexander and his co-conspirator also represented to their investors that Alexander and his co-conspirator would only profit from each series of the investment if it performed as promised to the investors. This gave the investors the misleading impression that their interests were fully aligned with those of Alexander and his co-conspirator. In fact, in addition to receiving a predetermined percentage of return on the investors’ funds, Alexander and his co-conspirator also received undisclosed payments of approximately 3% for recruiting investments to the timber investment scheme immediately upon transferring the investment funds to the purported timber broker. Alexander and his co-conspirator did not disclose to the investors: (a) the fact of these payments, or (b) the amount of the payments in relation to the investments made, or (c) the timing of the undisclosed payments to Alexander and his co-conspirator before any repayment was made to the investors.

 Alexander and Seawright have not been associated with Baker Donelson for nearly three years.  


Anonymous said...

I am glad to see that Seawright will actually have to serve some time, but I wish that Alexander had to serve some time in a BOP facility instead of two years of house arrest.

Anonymous said...

"Two years of house arrest" where he will be able to scam people on the internet.

Anonymous said...

and now for the clawbacks!

Anonymous said...

Seawright got time because he was facing the additional bk fraud charge. What I think is bs, is that he's not having to invade his $800k 401k funds to pay restitution, which I would argue are not protected from seizure as having been resultant from the conspiracy. I suppose he lived off timber funds and socked away max contribution from his salary in anticipation of future problems.

Anonymous said...

The Brent Alexander profile from Baker Donelson is pretty incredible. Viewing politics like markets? Identifying opportunities in the process?

Shocking that someone with that profile would get caught up in a scam like this...

We have got to get back to civics education, individual morality on things that are actually important like financial honesty, and we need to shun and punish, when appropriate, quick buck scam culture.

I won't hold my breath.

Anonymous said...

I've heard Alexander has serious health issues, which may be the reason for home confinement.

Anonymous said...

He’ll be out in 6 months since anything over a year sentence is eligible for “good time” hence the extra day added to the year sentence. It pays to be a wealthy crook. Scam millions and do 6 months in an easy facility, must be nice. Any regular peasant could get more time for ripping off a mattress tag in Madison.

Anonymous said...

You can bet that Alexander will be seen at some nice Belhaven restaurants during his two years of house arrest.
He thinks he’s above the law.

Anonymous said...

Seawright was always trying to scheme somebody. I found him to be very untrustworthy. He has been a snake oil salesman the entire time I have known him. I don't know Alexander, so I can't say anything positive or negative.

Anonymous said...

What exactly does home confinement entail? Can you go into your yard? Can you walk out in the street? I'm assuming there's an ankle monitor with GSP fencing?

Anonymous said...

The sentence is a "year and a day" which makes it a felony conviction. Less than that is a misdemeanor.

Anonymous said...


not always, there are misdemeanor convictions with imprisonment that can be more than a year. A misdemeanor DUI in Mass. can put you in jail for up to 2.5 years.

Anonymous said...

Actually, it’s sort of deflating given all the hype. I thought they were in cahoots with Adam’s, but that turn out not to be the case. They just, sorta conspired with each other not to figure out Lamar Adam’s was a fraud. A conspiracy to commit wire fraud charge, the charge to which they pled, is difficult for any defendant because the Feds don’t have to prove intent, but merely show the defendants “knew or should have known”. That’s why the Feds use it so often, because its ambiguity makes it a potent, and legal, weapon in prosecution. Reading the charges and related documents, Seawright, a lawyer, “should” have looked behind the forged and notarized documents and not relied on them to constitute a “inspection” of any underlying timber, cutting rights with landowners or agreements with the timber mills. Unfortunately for the Boyz, the fact that no one else involved with Adams, including sophisticated investors, family offices and banks, part of this scheme years before Alexander Seawright began making loans, did exactly the same thing (and did not figure it out either) is, according to the Feds, no defense. And, the “car salesman” commission paid to them by Adams is not really illegal. The Feds position seemed to be that the commission should have been disclosed because it “may” have influenced the investors decision to invest, which is typically a civil, not criminal matter. The real villain in all of this is Lamar Adams. I still don’t see how he kept all these plates spinning and forged thousands of documents good enough to fool investors and banks all while paying principal AND interest on a monthly basis. Seawright’s (and Alexander’s) investors earned a 10 percent return on their investment every month for SIX years. No wonder Seawright got so complacent he ended up in prison.

Anonymous said...

10:38 and 12:59, with all due respect, you are both wrong.

A federal crime is a “felony” if it is punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding one year. Notice I say “punishable.” The length of the actual sentence does not make it a felony, just the possible sentence punishable. In this case, the crimes pled are punishable by over a year, so they are definitely felonies.

As for the extra day in jon’s sentence, that was imposed to make jon eligible for good time credit. In the federal system, a sentence exceeding a year is eligible for good time credit. But it won’t reduce his sentence by six months. It will only reduce it by approximately 15%, assuming it is earned.

Anonymous said...

Tantamount to getting off scot-free.

Anonymous said...

Always wondered where all that coin came from for Seawright to do that massive renovate his house at Crane / Meadowbrook. Came from that dirt money! What a greedy sleaze-bag.

Anonymous said...

12:59 I hope you're not a lawyer because that answer is incorrect. You can plead to a felony and get less than a year in prison (even probation) and it's still a felony.

And the only reason Alexander wasn't hammered was due to his health.

Anonymous said...

Drove by Seawright's house every day. Those renovations took forever but the house still looks like the ordinary split level I grew up in.

Anonymous said...

Sell cocaine to a consenting drughead = 20 years. Rob a convenience store of $1200 = 7 years. Rob people of a million with a tie on = slap on the wrist. Our justice system is screwed up.

Anonymous said...

Meanwhile: McHenry walks the streeeetts of Baaaltimooore (with apologies to Bobby Bare).

The feds fucked up that trial royally and Allison farted around for two years, giving him time to file bankruptcy and abscond with untold, multiple hundreds of thousands. And he's just a Delta redneck who outsmarted the entire legal system.

Anonymous said...

As a formal federal inmate the year plus a day allows him to go to a halfway house up to six months before his release date. He will most likely be out in 6 or 7 months

Anonymous said...

@12:31 PM - True, but a year and a day guarantees that it is a felony conviction, i.e. never a misdemeanor.

Anonymous said...

What a joke. There’s clearly different justice systems depending on who is being tried. Why would a prosecutor agree to this joke with a fraudster thief like these blowhard a-holes? Somebody check the prosecuting attorney’s bank account, I’d bet there a recent influx of dirty cash. If there’s not, they should still lose their law licenses for incompetence and negligence.

Anonymous said...

I would say it's unbelievable, but no it is not. The affluent live under a parallel system.

I have personally witnessed people sentenced to far more state time for theft via bad checks than this.

Why do poor people have serious distrust of government and the courts?


Anonymous said...

All of the robberies, shoplifting add thefts in Jackson for the last 10 years do not come anywhere close to the amount these people stole.

Anonymous said...

@1:30 - so why did they lie about their roles to the marks they hooked into their scheme. These are all villains and that includes the prosecution and the judge. These two fraudsters shouldn’t have been let off the hook with a sweetheart plea deal., this was a slam dunk case and justice has not and will not be served. I’m not sure there’s an honest attorney left in the country, they all set aside any morality as soon as a potential paycheck walks in the door.

No Circle Jerks Here said...

November 2, 2023 at 6:23 PM - to answer your question why most people distrust the courts. With the exception of justice courts, all other court judges are required by law to have a jurist doctorate degree. This means that attorneys and judges are basically one in the same and the attorneys, courts and judges is all one big fraternity circle jerk. They all have a hand in the others pocket and they all jerk one another off.

For the average person such as you and me this type of behavior is beneath us so we dont play the "Circle Jerk Me" game and this is why the average person gets the hammer of the law dropped on them and an attorney that blatantly and admittedly beaks law gets to skate away with a hand spank sentence.

Anonymous said...

It truly is revolting that the wealthy answer to a different legal system and set of rules.
Eat the Rich indeed.

Anonymous said...

I tender to the court a motion to fix.

Anonymous said...

"Why do poor people have serious distrust of government and the courts?"

Let's say you must go to court for some infraction of the law. You hire a lawyer believing they will represent you.

When you get to court, the judge is essentially the court. The prosecution is a servant of the court, as are all law enforcement officers. This much is easy to understand, right?

What you don't know is that your lawyer, the one you hired, the one you are paying, is also a servant of the court. It's one big club, and you ain't in it. A tip of the hat to George Carlin.

It's a kangaroo court for real.

Anonymous said...

Does this mean they will not be ordering high price scotch in the favorite snob bars in the Jackson area ? I for one will be glad to see a couple of empty bar seats vacated and available for less arrogant “want to be” Jackson big shot soon to be recognized alcoholic lawyers?

Diddywahdiddy said...

Diddywahdiddy says:
What the H reason are they not wearing stripes and picking up trash along I-55, like the poor inmates in Rankin County that keep Lakeland Drive so clean? Why not similar sentences to those poor souls selling drugs on the street corners or passing bad checks?
This set of sentences is a joke. A sad, sad example of "white-collar Good Ol' Boy" crime gets a slap and a "don't do it again" speech from the bench. Such total BS.
BTW, is there a list of the not-so-bright 'rich folks' who were fooled by such a scheme? Does the list include the "Who's Who" of the CC of J and the River Hills Club?
Just a sayin'.
Jeez. Stupid is as stupid does. Slap on the wrist and folks with too much money and not enough time to investigate.
I would be curious if any of the same folks on the list are on a similar list, who succumbed to the swindler (I may be wrong, or mistaken of the identity, just in case) Jai Bagat (spelling?) of Air2Lan and subsequent schemes before he split town; similar to Mark Rodgers (same disclaimer...I may be of misplaced information) of 'Samarian Solutions' (spelling?...nursing home monitor scam).
Caveat Emptor!
Sic Semper Tyrannis!

Anonymous said...

One year and a day in prison -- whether part of it is in a halfway house or whatever -- is still a bitch for someone used to the life that this (former?) barrister had. And while home confinment seems light, it still could get bitchy around the house after a few months without getting around. But enough of the sentence as to jail time.

There is the little matter of a million dollars in restitution. Seems strange thought that one or the other could screw his former partner, since it is to be paid by both, with no allocation of who owes what.

I imagine the worst part of this sentence though is what is not reflected. As long as this went on, the legal fees incurred by each of these fraudsters probably exceeds the restitution amount. Granted, the court should not consider that in its sentencing, but I bet the families back at the house are well aware of that portion of the sentence.

Anonymous said...

Both are broke. Good luck on restitution.

Anonymous said...

Anyone know whether it is possible to eventually bankrupt out of a restitution order? I have to assume that the court anticipated that possibility. . .

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