A court-appointed receiver of some properties formerly owned by a local businessman who was indicted last year is seeking to sell the Joplin office building where some of the alleged fraudulent companies operated, court filings show.
Russell Grundy, the former owner of Joplin technology company Innovative Objects, was arrested last July after a federal grand jury accused him of fraud, money laundering and other crimes. The 30-count indictment came from a panel convened in Springfield.
In a more than $36 million lawsuit filed against Grundy by United Missouri Bank, Jasper County Circuit Judge Gayle Crane ordered appointment of a receiver for his properties.
That receiver, Carthage attorney Kevin Checkett, filed a motion in the case on Tuesday asking for authorization to sell the building at 2340 Range Line Road, where Innovative Objects and other Grundy-owned businesses operated. Crane has scheduled a hearing on the motion for 9 a.m. Tuesday, June 12.
At the time of his indictment, Grundy was in the midst of a legal battle with Miami Nation Enterprises, a subdivision of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma, over allegations of misconduct in his sale of a majority stake in Innovative Objects to the tribe.
Grundy was accused in the indictment of stealing more than $26 million in three schemes involving Innovative Objects, Nutra Blend, a Neosho-based Land O' Lakes subsidiary, and UMB and People's Bank of Seneca.
Grundy and two companies he operated, Russ Grundy Holdings and Grundy Land Group, had also been sued by UMB in 2016 for loans the bank says he took out and defaulted on. The U.S. attorney's office for the Western District of Missouri said the grand jury found he made false statements in applying for loans with UMB and People's Bank of Seneca.
According to court filings, Miami Nation Enterprises bought a 70 percent ownership stake in Innovative Objects from Russ Grundy Holdings on Sept. 1, 2014. The lawsuit filed by MNE alleges the group made the purchase based on misleading characterizations of Innovative Objects’ business dealings by Grundy.
The suit says Grundy convinced MNE to make the purchase by representing that it had a lucrative contract with Walmart Inc. to provide software development services to the grocery chain, which the suit later states MNE found to be false. The suit alleges Grundy knew he was misrepresenting Innovative Objects’ dealings, going as far as to allege Grundy presented a written agreement with Walmart that was forged, that Grundy exaggerated the company’s finances by more than $3 million and that he instructed employees to work on nonexistent projects to give the appearance of the security of the Walmart agreement.