Michigan farmer sentenced to 11 years, $23 million in fines

A Southwest Michigan crop farmer has been sentenced to prison and paying $23 million in damages for bank fraud and falsifying crop insurance claims.

Michael Stamp of Decatur was found guilty this week and will serve eight years for bank fraud and five years for false Federal Crop Insurance statements as part of his plea deal.

Stamp admitting to committing fraud between 2011 and 2018 to secure $68 million in credit lines from Wells Fargo and $5 million from the Federal Crop Insurance Program.

The case found Stamp inflated offsite grain storage claims to secure credit, overpaid land rents to push smaller farms out of business, and worked around farm program limits with employees as well as falsified numerous documents in an effort to become one of the largest farms in the state.
Eight others including his wife and brother in-law have also been charged with federal felonies for their conspiracy.

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