Oct. 25, 2012
Although a long time coming, a Seattle builder and unregistered contractor, Laurence Anthone, was convicted in King County Superior Court this week on multiple counts of theft and fraud.
On October 17, jurors found Mr. Anthone guilty of eight counts of securities fraud. They failed to reach a verdict on two additional charges. He is now scheduled to be sentenced on December 7.
Mr. Anthone’s financial shenanigans date back to 2003. As owner of MA Quick Construction, Mr. Anthone would trick investors into believing he owned or was buying a particular parcel of land for development. He would then accept investments ranging from a few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
When his victims realized nothing was being built on the land, they would demand their money back. Mr. Anthone would make excuses, ignore their calls, or write checks that would then bounce. Some of the victims sued and won judgments against Mr. Anthone, however, he has never paid back any of the stolen money.
Mr. Anthone was first charged with multiple counts of securities fraud and first-degree theft in 2008, as spelled out in this Seattle Times article, ” South Seattle builder charged with bilking investors.”
There were several delays to the trial, but his victims finally got their day in court last week.
Kudos to the staff at the King County Prosecutor’s Office for remaining committed to this case, and for L&I compliance inspectors who first caught wind of Mr. Anthone’s scheme.