Legal Controversy Overshadows Jimmy Winemiller's Wheeling & Dealing Career

by George Waldon  on Monday, Dec. 12, 2011 12:00 am  

The numbers game with assets and collateral was played to falsely qualify for the favorable RDA financing and create a lucrative transaction at the expense of the lender, according to the feds.

Straight Creek Farm was resold at foreclosure in a deal that reflected 35 cents on the dollar compared with the original transaction.

For now, the Feb. 27 court date in Greenville, Miss., remains on the docket.

Scandal Looms Behind Luxurious Shelter

The new Memphis address of Jimmy and Rebecca Winemiller is tinged with controversy.

The 15,632-SF mansion is the former home of Charles Bolton, an investment adviser who helped create bogus tax shelters for wealthy clients.

The opulent property was bought in July for more than $3.1 million in the name of the Rebecca B. Winemiller Revocable Trust. The seller was Bolton's wife, Michelle.

The sprawling residence in the gated Normandy Park neighborhood of east Memphis, just off Shady Grove Road, took two years to build. Bolton's detractors might argue the money that built the home came from ill-gotten gains.

The schemes illegally sheltered billions of dollars in taxable income and capital gains during 1998-2002 and in the process made millions of dollars for Bolton and others.

Bolton admitted using the shelters to illegally protect personal income of $15 million in 2000 and $25 million in 2001.

On April 13, 2010, Bolton pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to defraud the IRS in the case that lasted nearly three years. He was sentenced to 15 months in federal prison and fined $3 million in Manhattan's U.S. District Court.

Bolton was imprisoned but was released on bond while his sentence is appealed. The bail request was granted Sept. 10, 2010, after a letter from his lawyers noted:

"In addition to meeting the statutory qualifications for obtaining bail pending appeal, there are also equitable reasons that the court should grant this motion. Since Mr. Bolton has been incarcerated and separated from his wife and children, his family unfortunately has fallen into turmoil. His two oldest children are struggling; they have faced problems with drug and alcohol use and have dropped out of college. All three of his children are in counseling for depression. Mr. Bolton's wife has been trying to hold the family together on her own. Allowing Mr. Bolton to return to his family now, when they are in crisis, would help them immeasurably."



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