Former executive sentenced to nine years in fraud case

The former chief executive of a defunct Tulsa oil and natural gas company has been sentenced to nine years in federal prison for running a Ponzi scheme.
by Jay F. Marks Published: September 14, 2013
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A former Tulsa oil and natural gas executive has been sentenced to nine years in federal prison for bilking investors out of nearly $7 million.

Texas resident Jimmy E. Morrisett, 53, admitted in March to defrauding investors as CEO of Red Earth Resources Inc. and joint venture member manager of Alpine Petroleum LLC between the fall of 2004 and January 2007.

Prosecutors said Morrisett maintained an elaborate Ponzi scheme for more than two years, fooling his employees as well as his investors, while enjoying a lavish lifestyle at home and the office.

Morrisett and his wife had two Mercedes, an Infiniti SUV and a Ford Mustang Shelby Cobra in their driveway. They also owned two Harley-Davidson motorcycles and a pink motor scooter, according to court papers. The couple also rented a Mercedes for their nanny.

“Their uncurbed appetite for more, more, more knew only the bounds of the credulity and pocketbooks of investors around the nation, at least until the FBI came knocking,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memorandum.

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by Jay F. Marks
Energy Reporter
Jay F. Marks has been covering Oklahoma news since graduating from Oklahoma State University in 1996. He worked in Sulphur and Enid before joining The Oklahoman in 2005. Marks has been covering the energy industry since 2009.
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