Trial for Missouri's 'largest grain fraud' ever to begin

Thursday, October 1, 2009 | 8:17 a.m. CDT; updated 9:14 a.m. CDT, Thursday, October 1, 2009

MARTINSBURG — Former Martinsburg grain dealer Cathy Gieseker (geese-eh-ker) has been bound over for trial in what prosecutors are calling the largest grain fraud scheme in Missouri's history.

Circuit Judge Wesley Dalton ruled Wednesday that enough evidence existed to try Gieseker and set her arraignment for Nov. 3.

Gieseker faces 15 state and federal counts ranging from felony stealing to deceit in a $27 million grain fraud case. The hearing Wednesday involved the state charges.

Prosecutors say Gieseker promised 180 farmers returns 50 percent to 100 percent above market through nonexistent contracts with Archer Daniels Midland Co. The indictment alleges she instead sold grain at spot prices and used proceeds from other grain sales to pay inflated prices to some farmers.

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