(Ripley County, Ind.) – Committing multiple thefts prompted a number of complaints against a local business man, eventually leading to his arrest Tuesday.
The Ripley County Prosecutor’s Office filed a charge of Corrupt Business Influence against Scott Powers, 37, of Milan. The Class C felony carries a maximum of eight years in prison.
Powers is currently being held in the Ripley County Jail.
According to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Indiana Conservation Officer Steve Miller began investigating the business known as Powers Logging after numerous complaints about Powers and his business practices.
Some of the victims lost timber valued at several thousands of dollars as result of Powers’ alleged illegal business practices that involved the removal and sale of timber from landowners, then keeping the proceeds.
Other people who may have fallen victim to Powers’ alleged scam are asked to call the Ripley County Prosecutor’s Office, (812) 689-6331.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officers offer the following tips for those looking to sell their trees for timber:
Landowners wishing to sell timber are encouraged to utilize a consultant forester to aid in proper selection and marketing of their timber.
Once timber volume is properly estimated interested licensed timber buyers should be contacted. This can be done by advertising the sale through the media or making direct contact.
A sealed bid sale is the preferred method for a landowner to use in selling timber. Owners should specify that they maintain the right to accept or deny the bids they receive.
A contract is a must once a bid is accepted. In addition all the basics the contract should include any special clauses to address landowner concerns.
It is standard procedure for the landowner to be paid in full at the time the contract is signed when timber is marketed in this manner.
For information about selling timber and licensed timber buyers visit: www.dnr.IN.gov/forestry.