News and Press Releases

Concealed Previous Bankruptcy Filings and Hid Assets

May 18, 2007

JON RICHARD BAER, 39, of Bothell, Washington, was sentenced on May 16, 2007 to 30 months in prison and three years of supervised release for Bankruptcy Fraud. BAER was indicted October 12, 2006 and pleaded guilty December 8, 2006. At sentencing U.S. District Judge Marsha J. Pechman emphasized the importance of providing truthful information while under oath, particularly in bankruptcy proceedings, saying the justice system depends on it.

According to records filed in the case, BAER has a history of filing for bankruptcy on multiple occasions. He first filed for bankruptcy in 1987 in Nevada. BAER was discharged from his debts and then filed for bankruptcy in Washington State in 1993. In 2000, BAER filed for bankruptcy again, but this time altered his first name and social security number. This impeded linking his most recent filing to the one filed in 2000. BAER filed bankruptcy again in 2005, falsely claiming that he had not filed bankruptcy in the previous six years and claiming not to have used any other names. In addition BAER concealed assets in the bankruptcy in addition to transferring title to an eight acre parcel of property to his parents before he filed the 2005 bankruptcy. The government is seeking $20,252 in restitution, the legal fees and costs incurred by the bankruptcy trustee in locating the fraudulently concealed assets. Judge Pechman will hold a separate hearing on the restitution on June 8, 2007.

BAER remains free on bond until the Bureau of Prisons determines where he will be incarcerated.

The case was investigated by the Social Security Administration Office of Inspector General (SSA-OIG), which was assisted by the U.S. Trustee Program.

The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Celeste Miller and Assistant United States Attorney Norman Barbosa. Ms. Miller is an attorney with the U.S. Trustee Program and is based in Boise, Idaho.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110.

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