Manhattan indictment alleges conspiracy and shady business practices between Christian Media Corporation and Newsweek rescuer IBT Media.
The former head of The Christian Post, which calls itself the No. 1 Christian website in the world, was indicted this week in what investigators say was a scheme to obtain millions in loans through false pretenses.
William C. Anderson—who served as the CEO of the Christian Media Corporation (CMC International), whose flagship publication is The Christian Post—and Etienne Uzac—the CEO IBT Media (until recently, the owners of Newsweek)—were arraigned today on charges of fraud, conspiracy, money laundering, and falsifying business documents, following a long-running investigation by the Manhattan district attorney’s office.
The indictment alleges that the two companies, which were also indicted, faked financial audits to secure $10 million in loans—with $1.5 million going to CMC International—then used the money to make up for deficits from general operations rather than purchasing the high-performance equipment they told financers they would.
Both executives have denied the charges, noting that all the lenders had been paid back in full. In court today, they pleaded not guilty.
“The notion that my client intended to deceive anyone, much less engage in a money laundering conspiracy, is absurd,” Andy Lankler, Anderson’s lawyer, told The Wall Street Journal, which broke the news of the indictment. “We will vigorously defend these charges.”
Michelle Vu, chief of staff for The Christian Post, said in a statement to CT, “There are no charges against The Christian Post (CP), no allegations of any wrongdoing by CP. CP will continue its work as usual, focusing on bringing fair, accurate and relevant news to its readers.”
Anderson, who was at the helm of CMC …
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