Investors can speak at Gearhart’s trial

May 29, 2015
Kelly Gearhart

Kelly Gearhart

Victims of the financial fraud of former North County developer Kelly Gearhart will have a chance to speak at his sentencing hearing on June 1 in Los Angeles.

Gearhart and James Miller, the former president of Hurst Financial, defrauded more than 1,200 investors of more than $100 million in an alleged Ponzi scheme. Gearhart bilked investors who put money into Central Coast real estate projects and then siphoned off the monies for other purposes.

Even though Gearhart defrauded hundreds of victims , the government based its case on several frauds including Gearhart’s largest, his Vista Del Hombre project in Paso Robles. As such, any investor in the Vista Del Hombre project will be permitted to address the court on Monday.

Gearhart recently requested a continuance for an evidentiary hearing. During an evidentiary hearing, the government would prove certain facts in support of the 135 months sentence it seeks and Gearhart would introduce evidence in support of the 57 months’ imprisonment sentence he seeks.

On Monday, federal prosecutors will argue over the number of Gearhart’s victims. Prosecutors contend Gearhart had over 250 victims while the probation department says there were only 17 victims. The probation department considered only investors Gearhart spoke directly with as victims.

The Court intends to proceed with the sentencing as scheduled on June 1 at 11 a.m. in courtroom 11 at the United States Courthouse at 312 N. Spring Street in Los Angeles. Then, the Court will decide whether to hold an evidentiary hearing, which would occur on June 29 at 1:30 p.m.

So, it is unclear whether the sentence will be pronounced on June 1 or June 29, though victims will be permitted to speak on June 1.



  1. SandyK says:

    It’s going to be great theater though….bet the place is packed.

    (5) 5 Total Votes - 5 up - 0 down
  2. joseywales says:

    stupid people who lost their money to this guy should not be allowed to speak…..

    (-7) 17 Total Votes - 5 up - 12 down
    • kayaknut says:

      Some call them greedy not stupid, what else would you call it if someone with a slick presentation claimed to get you 15x times the return on your investment than what any bank or regulated business could get you and you said “Here’s all my money”?

      (5) 5 Total Votes - 5 up - 0 down
    • hotdog says:

      I like the movie Josey Wales, he sought justice for being wronged. You apparently think the victims should be ignored, I suggest you change your online moniker to Hitler.

      You can fax your comments today in case you can’t go to the trial, which may be postponed again anyway.
      Fax to (213) 534-7375

      Tell the DOJ what you think of the crooks and how you’ve been damaged.

      The damage went much farther than ruining a bunch of innocent investors. They could no longer afford to buy that new car (so damaging the car industry). They could no longer afford to fix their homes or buy another, damaging that industry. They could no longer afford new clothing, food, medicine or other things we all enjoy, damaging those industries and people working in them. This fraud affected many thousands not even involved in the investments.
      What say you now, Hitler?

      (0) 0 Total Votes - 0 up - 0 down
    • Moderator says:

      Don’t feed the troll

      (1) 3 Total Votes - 2 up - 1 down

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