ST. PAUL, Minn. – A Becker, Minn., man was sentenced to pay $1,403,578.40 in restitution, serve three years’ probation, and 150 hours of community service for converting collateral that secured loans from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

According to court documents, in 2017 and 2018, Robert Waldon John Anderson, 67, used false and fraudulent statements to obtain five Commodity Credit Corporation loans through a federal farm loan program administered by the Farm Service Agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As part of the loan terms, Anderson pledged to maintain bushels of corn as collateral, agreeing not to move or dispose of them without prior approval of the Commodity Credit Corporation.

According to court documents, in late 2018, the FSA conducted a spot check and discovered that the bins of corn Anderson pledged as collateral for three of the loans were almost empty. Anderson had sold the corn under a family member’s name to avoid detection by the CCC. The FSA also learned that Anderson orchestrated two fraudulent loans in the names of family members for which collateral grain never actually existed. In total, Anderson defrauded the USDA of $1,425,718.36.

On May 6, 2021, Anderson pleaded guilty to one count of conversion of CCC security.

Acting U.S. Attorney Charles J. Kovats made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Nancy E. Brasel sentenced the defendant.

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This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Office of Inspector General, and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah E. Hudleston.