Friday, August 5, 2022, 4:28 pm
News Flash Archive
Express Grain has dropped its appeal of the revocation of its licenses to carry on business as a grain warehouse and grain dealer. The licenses were revoked by the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce after a finding of fraud committed by Express Grain in the mandated audit reports which were provided by EG to MDAC for its license renewal in mid-2021.
Commissioner Andy Gipson revoked the licenses after conducting a hearing at which evidence was adduced that doctored audit reports had been submitted to support the license renewals. MDAC discovered the falsifications after obtaining original and true copies of the audits from EG's auditing firm Horne, LLP.
To see our extensive reporting on MDAC's license revocation and EG's appeal to chancery court, click here: Express Grain appeals MS Department of Agriculture decision voiding its warehouse licenses for fraud
After that, both the Mississippi Development Authority and UMB Bank stated in court filings that EG had also provided them with falsified audits, which they discovered based upon MDAC's discovery. To read about UMB Bank's claims of fraud, click here: UMB Bank levels new fraud accusations against John Coleman and Express Grain
MDA had provided a grant of $750,000 to EG based upon the falsified audits, while UMB Bank had extended loans totaling $71 million based (in part) upon the same forged audit reports. See our reporting here: MDA sues bankrupt Express Grain, claims falsified audit reports were submitted to obtain $750,000 grant
EG's bankruptcy attorney Craig Geno requested that the appeal be dropped because, since selling all its assets, it can no longer be in the grain business:
As a result, Appellant [EG] no longer has any possibility of an active, ongoing grain storage, grain warehouse or gain processing operation since it has sold all of its rights, title and interest in and to all of those business functions it previously carried out.
EG's motion to dismiss its appeal may be seen in full here: Motion to Dismiss Express Grain Appeal
Chancery Court Judge Willie J. Perkins Sr's order dismissing it may be seen here: Agreed Order to Dismiss Express Grain Appeal
There are other signs that EG is about to finish up its long, arduous bankruptcy case. Yesterday, Geno requested, and the bankruptcy court granted, a seven-day extension on the time period for EG to submit its Disclosure Statement and Plan of Re-organization to the court. See EG's motion here: Motion to Extend Exclusivity Period
The Plan of Re-organization, which is now due to be filed on August 15, 2022, will provide details as to how the remaining assets, mostly cash of around $59 million, will be used to pay off creditors. Almost all of the cash has already been approved for payment of debts to the bank and financing companies, with $9.2 million to pay a small amount of the $48 million owed to farmers who delivered grain for which EG never paid them.
The plan should finally reveal how most of EG's creditors will receive little to nothing for the $218 million in claims filed against the company in the bankruptcy proceeding. EG appears to be liquidated at a total cash value of less than $85 million, most of which will be going to the bank and financing companies.
To read all our coverage of the Express Grain bankruptcy case, see here: Index of Express Grain articles
John Pittman Hey
The Taxpayers Channel
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