Businessman with ties to Bonita Springs charged in $50 million bank fraud
A federal grand jury has charged a former Maryland businessman, who was living in Bonita Springs, in a multimillion-dollar bank fraud and money laundering scheme.
The 10-count indictment against Mark Ian Gaver, 56, was handed up Tuesday in Baltimore.
"He surrendered himself willingly, and he's going to be fighting the charges," said Alan Hamisch, a Naples attorney who represented Gaver in a recent divorce case.
Gaver is charged with eight counts of bank fraud and two counts of money laundering related to an alleged scheme to obtain $50 million in financing from Santander Bank for his company, Gaver Technologies, using fraudulent financial information.
He was arrested Nov. 15 based on a criminal complaint. He's been in jail since and transferred to Maryland last week.
He was denied bond Wednesday.
"He's fighting the charges," Hamisch said. "They are not true. Hopefully, he'll be exonerated."
Gaver formed Gaver Technologies, an information technology company based in Frederick, Maryland, in 1998.
According to the indictment, Gaver allegedly provided false financial statements to Santander Bank, including fraudulent audit reports and contract status reports for clients, between November 2008 and April 2016 to get credit extensions and larger lines of credit. The loan amount grew from $18.5 million to $50 million after the bank increased the line of credit eight times.
Gaver is accused of falsely representing that his company had obtained contracts with such large and well-known government agencies as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Environmental Protection Agency; United States Air Force; and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
Gaver is also charged with spending a large chunk of the bank's money on himself. That includes spending $779,000 for the rental of private planes and $2.275 million for the purchase of a vacation home at The Colony Golf & Bay Club in Bonita Springs.
Additionally, he's accused of using bank money to purchase luxury cars, such as a 2012 Maserati Gran Turismo and a 2011 Mercedes Benz SL Class Roadster, and to buy a $300,000 private membership at an exclusive golf club in Naples, as well as to pay for vacations to France, Germany, Mexico, the Bahamas and other islands.
Gaver faces a maximum sentence of up to 30 years in prison on each of eight counts of bank fraud, as well as 10 years each for the two money laundering charges, plus supervised release of three to five years.
The indictment follows a civil suit Santander filed in federal court in Maryland against Gaver and several of his other companies, including Gaver Properties, Gaver Consulting and Pelican Colony Partnership, seeking its $50 million, plus damages.
The suit, filed in February, was later amended to include his ex-wife, Donna. Their divorce case was settled earlier this year, but appeals have been filed by the bank and by Mark Gaver.
In court documents, Mark Gaver said his ex-wife was the 100 percent owner of Gaver Technologies and Gaver Consulting and a 50 percent owner of Gaver Properties and several other shared entities — and that she'd "drained all monies from these sources, as well as others, by depositing funds in accounts held by her family members or in her Cayman Islands bank accounts."
In an answer to the complaint, Donna Gaver said she had no knowledge of the fraud, and she denied claims for aiding and abetting it. No criminal charges have been brought against her.
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