BUSINESSMAN SENTENCED TO FEDERAL PRISON FOR FRAUD AND MONEY LAUNDERING RELATED TO CONSTRUCTION OF BAKER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
BATON ROUGE, LA – Acting United States Attorney Corey Amundson announced today that U.S. District Judge John W. deGravelles sentenced NATHIAN D. HOSSLEY, age 51, of Baton Rouge, to serve 78 months in federal prison for defrauding a construction contractor out of over $800,000 in relation to the construction of the Impact Charter School in Baker, Louisiana. The Court also ordered HOSSLEY to make restitution payments to Bouma Construction (“Bouma”) and MidSouth Bank in the amounts of $261,339.16 and $44,000, respectively, and will be required to serve a three-year term of supervised release upon his release from prison.
Last October, HOSSLEY pled guilty to wire fraud and money laundering. These convictions arose from HOSSLEY’s ownership and operation of First Millennium Construction (“First Millennium”), a local commercial construction company headquartered in Baton Rouge, and Spice Bistro, a local restaurant that HOSSLEY co-owned.
In 2014, HOSSLEY submitted a bid to Bouma for First Millennium to work as a subcontractor on construction of the Impact Charter School in Baker, Louisiana, in 2014. During the bidding process, HOSSLEY submitted an application for the job to Bouma in which he fraudulently represented that he had never been indicted or convicted of a crime, when, in fact, he had multiple federal convictions for wire fraud, bank fraud, conspiracy to commit bank fraud, and providing a false statement in connection with a bank loan. Bouma ultimately hired First Millennium for the Impact Charter School project and the companies entered into a contract for $1,221,163.00.
Construction on the school started in June of 2014. Shortly thereafter, HOSSLEY submitted multiple payment applications to Bouma that falsely understated or omitted money owed to certain subcontractors and vendors that he had hired to work on the job. HOSSLEY concealed from Bouma that he was using that company’s construction payments on personal expenditures and on Spice Bistro, a restaurant he had recently opened and co-owned. HOSSLEY furthered the scheme in October of 2014 by forging and causing one of his employees to forge the signatures of First Millennium subcontractors on joint checks and lien waivers. This resulted in Bouma paying his company another $96,125 for the Impact Charter School project, which HOSSLEY quickly used to make a $29,474.34 payment on his American Express credit card and on a $22,000 transfer of funds to Spice Bistro. In total, HOSSLEY caused over $800,000 in losses to Bouma through his fraudulent scheme.
Acting U.S. Attorney Corey Amundson stated, “Mr. Hossley met justice this afternoon in federal court and will be spending his days and nights in a well-deserved prison cell. Through fraud, he became involved in a project to build Impact Charter School and then stole from the project. Because of the defendant’s fraud, the general contractor was unable to pay employee bonuses and the school’s students had to start the year in a temporary facility. I commend Bouma Construction and the other companies and workers who assisted in this investigation and helped to bring this defendant to justice. I also greatly appreciate the dedicated and outstanding efforts of the prosecutors and FBI agents who worked on this important matter.”
FBI Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey Sallet stated, “Mr. Hossley’s lies and deceit caused real harm to real people. It’s people like Mr. Hossley that tarnish the reputation of the hard-working men and women in the construction industry, and potentially have a negative impact on out of state companies seeking to invest in Louisiana. In coordination with our local, state and federal partners, the FBI will continue to aggressively pursue any credible allegations of fraud and abuse.”
The investigation was handled by the Baton Rouge office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Ryan Crosswell, Rene Salomon, and Cal Leipold.