INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Five central Indiana residents and a Detroit, Michigan man are jailed after being found guilty of a year-long fraud conspiracy involving construction projects in Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Kentucky and Indiana.

The US Attorney’s Office for the Indianapolis District Court says the six people were responsible for stealing more than $ 8.4 million from a Pennsylvania-based bank and insurance company. A discharge from the office said that neither the bank nor the insurance company were named as they are victims in the cases.

The owner of Remarkable Creative Enterprises, 40-year-old Ernie Perkins from Zionsville, received the longest prison sentence: 70 months. He was sentenced on Friday.

Five other people were convicted late last year:

  • John L. Williams, 52, Zionsville, former victim bank employee: 108 months in prison. Williams was a construction project manager in the regional office of the victim bank in Indianapolis.
  • Robert Finch, 73, Indianapolis, owner of Finch Constructors and Finch Management: 48 months in prison.
  • Donald Landis, 59, Plainfield, owner of P&L Supply: 36 months in prison.
  • Walter Watson, 72, Detroit, Michigan, owner of W-3 construction company: 18 months in prison.
  • Shalonda Coleman, 45, Indianapolis, former insurance company employee: 24 months in prison.

The press release said: “In executing the program, Williams would use the information available to him as a bank clerk to identify construction and renovation projects that are likely to come under budget. Williams then contacted Perkins, Finch, Watson, and Landis instructing them to submit fraudulent invoices for low-budget projects for work that never got done and materials that never got delivered. Williams used his position at the bank and oversight of the projects in question to approve the payment of the fraudulent bills. Once the bank paid the bills, Perkins, Finch, Watson and Landis would throw a large percentage of the money back to CB Consulting, a fictional business unit controlled by Williams. “