Brandon Barber recently pled guilty to several charges including money laundering and bankruptcy fraud. He reportedly changed his plea to guilty from not guilty when appearing in court this week for a hearing. While other people were involved in what investigators are calling a real estate scheme, Barber plead guilty to one count of bankruptcy fraud and two counts of money laundering.

Barber and four male co-defendants were investigated by federal prosecutors who found information about a real estate scheme they were actively involved with. The scheme included a number of transactions that took place throughout northwest Arkansas in connection with Barber’s bankruptcy filing. He filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2009, and reportedly listed debt liabilities at $47 million. A year later he was arrested for DWI suspicion.

One of the men being charged in connection with the scheme, Brandon Rains, was named as one of the top 40 intriguing business and political leaders under 40 by the Northwest Arkansas Journal. He faces one count of money laundering and one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud. He is another defendant expected to change his not guilty plea to guilty at a future hearing.

The men involved in the scheme were working to defraud various northwest Arkansas real estate transactions that included loans to finance condos and other properties in St. Louis, Little Rock, Springdale and other areas. Barber has been in jail since May when he was ordered by the judge after a home confinement violation. He will be sentenced later this year.


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