INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a 54-year sentence for a 67-year-old former pastor convicted of pocketing millions of dollars that investors believed would be used to build churches.
The court denied Vaughn Reeves’ appeal Monday. He was convicted in October of nine counts of securities fraud.
Reeves had argued his sentence was too harsh. But the three-judge panel noted that Special Judge Dena Martin had found Reeves defrauded about 2,900 people of more than $13 million, and that many of those people lost their entire retirement savings.
Reeves’ three sons also were convicted on securities fraud charges involving the family’s shuttered Sullivan-based church-bond company, Alanar. Court documents say the men ran the business like a Ponzi scheme and diverted money for personal gain.