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Entries in Vann's (7)


Judge denies motion by former Vann's CEO to delay prison

(MISSOULA)- A federal judge is denying a motion by the former CEO of Vann's to postpone his date to begin serving time for fraud and other offenses. 

Earlier this year, George Manlove was convicted of 1-hundred-70 counts of theft and fraud. A jury found him guilty of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from Vann's, the Missoula-based electronics and appliance retailer which eventually went out of business.

Prosecutors had wanted to send him to prison for a decade, but defense attorneys argued a year was sufficient. Last month, Judge Dana Christensen split the difference, sentencing Manlove to 5-years in prison with 3-years of supervised release. 

Manlove is scheduled for a hearing to determine how much restitution he will have to pay to his victims on June 19th. But he was arguing for more time before reporting to a corrections center in Oregon, saying his mother was terminally ill and he needed more travel time. 

However, yesterday Christensen denied Manlove's request to remain free until mid-July, saying the court had given him "more time than the usual defendant to self-surrender" and that another 30-days "is not warranted." However, the judge did agree to give Manlove until June 22nd to self-surrender at the Oregon prison, allowing him time to travel from his Southwest Idaho home to Missoula for the restitution hearing, and then make it to Oregon. 



Former Vann's executive now charged with tax evasion 

(MISSOULA)- He's already facing hundreds of charges. Now the former CEO of a Missoula-based electronics retailer is also being accused of tax evasion. 

George Manlove, and former Vann's CFO Paul Nisbet are charged with bilking the company and banks of hundreds of thousands of dollars right before the company was forced into bankruptcy. Those charges filed in December include fraud, and money laundering.  

Now, Manlove is facing additional charges filed in a second Grand Jury indictment also accusing him of filing phoney income tax statements from 2010 through 2012. 

Both Manlove and Nisbet are claiming their innocence to the amended charges. Their trial is scheduled for this coming October in U.S. District Court in Missoula before Judge Dana Christensen. 


Vann's loses lease, will close Missoula and Bitterroot stores

(MISSOULA)- Vann's is announcing plans to close its stores in Missoula and Hamilton after the company was unable to work out a deal to stay in their present locations. 

However, Vann's Acquisition LLC Chief Executive Office Greg Regelbrugge says the retailer still hopes to work out arrangements to return to both markets in the next future. 

Vann's Acquisition had purchased the locally-owned company from founder Pete Vann last year after he'd been forced to come back in and take over the struggling company, which was mired in debt. 

Since then, Regelbrugge says sales have been growing. But he says the company couldn't reach an agreement with Vann, who wanted to sell the stores in Missoula, Hamilton and Kalispell. 

Today Regelbrugge announced the company has been unable to reach agreement to extend the lease. Other attempts to move to a new location in North Reserve also haven't panned out. So Vann's will close in Hamilton by the end of this month, and by the end of May in Missoula. All of the company's business operations will move to Bozeman. 

Regelbrugge is still hopeful of making arrangements to keep the Kalispell operation open in a temporary location. The company's ON Store in the Southgate Mall will remain open. 


Vann's sale back in court for possible approval 

(MISSOULA)- Attorneys working on the proposed sale of Vann’s to a Texas company are scheduled to be in federal court Friday afternoon to see if the deal meets with a judge’s approval. 

The Montana-based appliance and electronics store is working to survive in the face of a federal bankruptcy filed late last summer. At first the case was filed as a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which would have allowed for reorganization of the company’s millions of dollars in debt while staying in business. However, the proceeding was converted to a Chapter 7 case as debtors press to get the finances worked out before the important holiday sales season, or force liquidation. 

Earlier this week, McMagic Partners stepped into the picture with an offer to buy Vann’s stores and operations across Montana for $4.5-million. Part of the deal would see McMagic offering current Vann’s employees positions with the new company. 

Both parties had until Thursday afternoon to firm up the deal. Now, the court-appointed trustee handling the case is ready to go back into a Missoula courtroom to get approval of the sale to McMagic, and setting up a framework to satisfy outstanding claims. Under terms of that order, the trustee would continue to monitor the sale as the deal goes through. 

That hearing is set for 2 p.m. 


Vann's could have new buyer if court approves

(MISSOULA)- If the U.S. Bankruptcy Court approves, Vann's chain of Montana stories could have a new owner as soon as next Monday. 

Vann's filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy late last summer, hoping to re-organize its business in face of market pressures that have pushed the chain to the verge of liquidation and closure. The case was converted to a Chapter 7 proceeding last week, satisfying major creditors who've been concerned Vann's has the resources to make it through the critical holiday sales season.

Now, KPAX TV is reporting a Texas company, McMagic Partners LP is offering to buy Vann's operation for $4.5-million. As part of the purchase agreement, Vann's would pay McMagic Partners $250,000 to settle outstanding customer issues and cover merchandise returns. McMagic would offer current employees a job with the new operation. 

The deal has to meet all legal deadlines by Thursday afternoon.