KALIDA — A former principal in Unverferth Motor Sales in Kalida has been indicted on felony theft charges accusing him of stealing money from banks that made loans to the dealership.
Randy L. Unverferth, 61, of Kalida, was charged with two counts of theft that each are third-degree felonies and a third count of theft that is a fourth-degree felony.
The charges say he stole between $150,000 and $750,000 from Fort Jennings State Bank between April 2007 and November 2011, according to court records.
He is accused of stealing the same amounts between November 2007 and December 2009 from Ottoville Bank and between $7,500 and $150,000 from Union Bank from August 2005 to July 2010, according to court records.
Unverferth has pleaded not guilty to the charges and has a Nov. 2 pretrial hearing scheduled.
Putnam County Prosecutor Gary Lammers said Unverferth was one of the owners at the dealership in Kalida, which is now closed. Unverferth was in charge of sales at Unverferth Motor Sales, which sold Chrysler and Dodge vehicles. He took out the loans, Lammers said.
Unverferth is accused of selling cars that were purchased with loans from the bank and not repaying the banks once he had the money. Furthermore, he requested duplicate title documents to make the sales go through and deceive the banks, Lammers said.
“I’m not sure where the money went or if he was just trying to keep the business afloat,” Lammers said. “There’s no real way of tracking the cash transactions and the business is now defunct.”
The matter surfaced after the banks contacted the Prosecutor’s Office. Some banks have filed lawsuits trying to recoup the money, Lammers said.