Montana Says Fraud Pool Pays First Victim

Montana officials say the new securities restitution pool has paid out to its first fraud victim.

State Auditor Monica Lindeen said that a Plains resident who lost his life’s savings of $55,000 in a hurricane relief scam will get $13,500 back from the pool.

Lindeen asked the 2011 Legislature to create the pool of money for victims, which is funded by court-ordered contributions from white collar criminals. The law allows victims to be compensated 25 percent of their loss, up to $25,000.

The victim of the hurricane scam was promised a very high return for a 2007 investment he was told would help rebuild hurricane damage.

Lindeen says that the perpetrator of the scam, Terry Parks, is currently serving a 20-year sentence in state prison and can’t repay the money.