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Steele Stephens

Steve Stephens, shown in 1959 (inset) and 2016.
Banking & Finance / Government & Politics / Investments / Tourism

Steve Stephens, Distinctive Voice of Arkansas, Dies at 90

Stephen Owen Stephens, whose fluid baritone made him a broadcast hall of famer and Arkansas' version of Dick Clark with his 1950s dance program "Steve's Show" on KTHV, actually had to work hard on that fabled voice, he said in 2018. read more >
Jeremy Hutchinson
Health Care / Legal / Nonprofits

Senator A’s Best Case (Gwen Moritz Editor’s Note)

Is it possible that Rusty Cranford believed he was bribing Jeremy Hutchinson for legislative actions, but Hutchinson thought he was being paid only for legal work? read more >
Education / Government & Politics / Media & Marketing / Nonprofits

The One-Way Test (Gwen Moritz Editor’s Note)

At virtually every meeting, Rotarians recite “The Four-Way Test of the Things We Think, Say or Do,” but I keep my mouth shut. I’m fine with the first two — Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? — because those are my personal and professional goals at all times. But the parts about building goodwill and friendship and being beneficial to all concerned — well, the things I’m paid to think, say and do don’t always pass those tests. read more >
Martha Shoffner and her lawyer Chuck Banks leaving federal court on Friday.
Government & Politics / Legal

At the Martha Shoffner Sentencing, Questions Over ‘Benefit,’ Jurisdiction

Prosecutors scored point after point Friday, but U.S. District Judge Leon Holmes sentenced former State Treasurer Martha Shoffner to 30 months in federal prison — less than half the time that the U.S. Attorney's office sought. read more >
Government & Politics / Investments / Legal

Securities Department Seeks Steele Stephens Fine Payment

The Arkansas Securities Department has filed a complaint against Steele Stephens, stating he has not yet paid a $20,000 fine that was ordered in May. read more >
Robert Keenan
Government & Politics / Investments / Legal

Consent Order Imposes $25k Fine on St. Bernard

St. Bernard Financial Services Inc. of Russellville will pay a $25,000 fine to the Arkansas Securities Department for failing to properly supervise broker Steele Stephens. read more >
Government & Politics / Investments

Hearing Officer Appointed in Steele Stephens, Robert Keenan Cases

Arkansas Securities Commissioner A. Heath Abshure said Tuesday that he has appointed Jack Pruniski of Hilburn Calhoon Harper Pruniski & Calhoun of Little Rock as hearing officer in the cases of Steele Stephens and Robert Keenan. read more >
Banking & Finance / Government & Politics / Legal

Steele Stephens Could Still Face Fines over Shoffner Bribes

Federal prosecutors gave Steele Stephens immunity from prosecution and let him keep the millions in bond sales commissions he received from the business relationship that resulted in the criminal conviction of former state Treasurer Martha Shoffner. read more >
Government & Politics / Investments / Legal

Russellville Financial Adviser David Crain Fined $5,000

W. David Crain, a former representative of St. Bernard Financial Services of Russellville, has agreed to a $5,000 fine and more than $4,100 in restitution for his handling of a widow's account. read more >
Business Services / Investments / Legal

Securities Department, Crain Clash Over Post-Shoffner Subpoena

You may know that the Arkansas Securities Department is after W. David Crain, a CPA who worked for St. Bernard Financial Services Inc., the Russellville firm under fire for employing Steele Stephens, a broker who bribed former state treasurer Martha Shoffner. read more >
Martha Shoffner, leaving the federal courthouse on Friday, after a judge rejected her guilty plea.

Lawyers for Martha Shoffner Continue Pushing for Acquittal

Lawyers for former Arkansas treasurer Martha Shoffner say prosecutors failed to show Shoffner was paid with any business funds as her legal team continues pushing for her acquittal on 14 bribery and extortion charges. read more >
Business Services / Government & Politics / Investments / Legal

Securities Department Goes After Firm That Did Business With Martha Shoffner’s Office

Robert Keenan, CEO of St. Bernard Financial Services, says the state Securities Department is retaliating for an ethics complaint he filed against Heath Abshure, although he was given notice of the department's plans before he filed the complaint. read more >
Government & Politics / Investments / Legal

Steele Stephens: Gave Payments, Received $2.5M in State Commissions

A broker who says he gave $36,000 to Arkansas' former treasurer to help her during a rough patch testified at her federal corruption trial Monday that he received around $2.5 million in commissions for business he did for the state. read more >
Government & Politics / Legal

Steele Stephens: Martha Shoffner Took $6K at Arkansas Capitol

A broker who handled a large share of Arkansas' bond business says he gave the state's former treasurer $6,000 at her Capitol office because she needed help through a rough patch in her life. read more >
Government & Politics / Legal

Witnesses Portray Martha Shoffner As Cranky, Demanding

Federal prosecutors drew testimony Thursday from current and former Arkansas treasurer's office employees about how the state missed profit opportunities by selling bonds early and angry outbursts by former Treasurer Martha Shoffner, who is accused of illegally accepting $36,000 from a bond dealer. read more >
Government & Politics / Legal

Witness Testimony Begins in Martha Shoffner Trial

The first witness in the federal bribery trial of former Arkansas treasurer Martha Shoffner told jurors about the particulars of how state bond trades are made. read more >
Government & Politics / Legal

Defense Reveals Broker’s Name in Martha Shoffner Trial

The defense attorney for former Arkansas treasurer Martha Shoffner has revealed the name of the bond broker who has immunity to testify in Shoffner's federal bribery trial. read more >
Government & Politics / Legal

Martha Shoffner Pleads Not Guilty to New Mail Fraud Counts

Former State Treasurer Martha Shoffner pleaded not guilty Thursday morning to 10 counts of mail fraud, charges that were added earlier this month to a pending indictment for bribery and extortion. read more >
Unnamed in the official criminal complaint, mulitple sources point to Steve Stephens as being a part of the bondsmen team who did the most business with former Arkansas Treasurer Martha Shoffner.
Banking & Finance / Government & Politics / Legal / Media & Marketing / Real Estate

Housing Woes Plagued Cash-Strapped Martha Shoffner

Official corruption is generally associated with a desire for personal enrichment. But in the case of Martha Shoffner, the payoffs were small and, according to the FBI, driven primarily by housing concerns. read more >
Government & Politics / Legal

A Cut-Rate Parasite (Gwen Moritz Editor’s Note)

Hollywood couldn't dream up a scandal like the one that has culminated in the indictment of Martha Shoffner, who resigned as Arkansas Treasurer last week. Or maybe, Hollywood already has. read more >