A fuller article to remind us, all of us who choose not to tacitly participate in the sins of another, of the true victims of this tragic fraud.'Monk' faces felony charges
By DENNIS MAGEE, firstname.lastname@example.org | Posted: Thursday, March 22, 2012 12:00 pm
ST. LOUIS --- The man some in Buchanan County knew as the Most Rev. and Lord Abbot Ryan St. Anne Scott sits in a Missouri jail cell today. The self-anointed monk awaits extradition to Illinois on seven felony charges.
"We'll probably go get him at the beginning of the week," Sgt. Scott Cordle, chief of jail operations for the Knox County Sheriff's Office in Illinois, said Wednesday.
Scott is charged with three counts of financial exploitation of an elderly person, three counts of theft and one count of deceptive practices, according to Cordle. Each charge is a felony in Illinois.
Authorities issued the arrest warrant Feb. 29. Deputies apprehended Scott at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday at a house on Sweet Gum Drive in St. Louis. One of Scott's associates, Thomas Bertke, reportedly lives there.
Cordle could not supply details behind the charges Scott faces, and Knox County State's Attorney John Pepmeyer was not available Wednesday afternoon.
However, Sheila Anderson, one of Scott's elderly followers who left his group in Illinois, previously won a summary judgement against Scott worth $161,000.
Anderson's attorney, Dan Deneen, in Bloomington, Ill., declined to comment on Scott's most recent legal dilemma.
"Since the arrest involves crimes for which Sheila is the victim, it would not be appropriate for us to comment," Deneen wrote in an email to The Courier.
According to court documents, Scott acknowledged borrowing money from Anderson to keep his Illinois corporation, the Holy Rosary Abbey, afloat. He promised to repay Anderson after selling the property in Galesburg, Ill. Federal and state courts in Illinois, however, subsequently seized control of the property.
Scott moved his operation to Iowa, set up his second corporation and established what he called the Buchanan Abbey. According to court documents, Anderson alleged many of the items Scott's group moved to Independence were actually hers or were subject to the civil action pending in Illinois.
Bertke is also known as Brother Isaac, according to public records. He is listed as one of the initial directors for the corporation Scott set up in Iowa called the Congregation of the Order of St. Benedict, a self-described "traditional" Roman Catholic institution. He was also a director of Scott's operation in Galesburg.
Scott listed himself as president of the Buchanan Abbey corporation and used the entity to arrange a real estate contract with county supervisors for the former Buchanan County home near Independence. He never insured the property as required, however, and County Attorney Shawn Harden nullified the purchase agreement.
Scott and his small group of followers abandoned the property in January just ahead of a formal eviction. He owed more than $100,000 on the former county home at the time.Ongoing issues
Controversy has followed Scott, whose original name is Randell Stocks, for decades. Court documents, police records and Scott's own writings reveal a string of failed ventures and lawsuits. Catholic church officials have denounced Scott since the early 1990s multiple times as a fraud and not a legitimately ordained priest.
The paper trail crosses at least seven states and into Canada, and he has a felony conviction for fraudulently cashing a check while he was a public employee with the city of Edgerton, Wis. He served three years probation.
Scott filed for bankruptcy in Illinois on behalf of the Holy Rosary Abbey in December. He filed for personal bankruptcy in Iowa a few days later.
Those cases are still pending. Scott, though, has not participated in several related hearings and has so far failed to file required documents as ordered by federal bankruptcy courts in Iowa and in Illinois.
His most recent attorney, Brian Pondenis, quit because Scott was not cooperating or providing accurate information.
Bankruptcy trustee Renee Hanrahan plans to auction Scott's belongings, including dozens of religious items, sometime in early April.http://wcfcourier.com/news/local/b05bbd03-66bf-50c9-8c4d-30803cd23789.html