Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Tommy Gibson Sentanced

Owner And COO Of Defunct Eastern Livestock Company Sentenced In Federal Court For Committing Mail Fraud

– Founder Thomas Gibson sentenced to 70 months in federal prison;
– COO Michael McDonald sentenced to 57 months in federal prison

May 22, 2013
LOUISVILLE, KY – The former owner and former chief operating officer of now-bankrupt Eastern Livestock Company, LLC, were sentenced in U. S. District Court today, by Senior Judge Thomas B. Russell, for mail fraud arising from their part in a check-kiting scheme that caused the loss of millions of dollars to hundreds of businesses and individuals, including approximately 200 sellers of cattle located in Kentucky, who did business with Eastern Livestock in 2010, announced David J. Hale, United States Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky.
Founder and former owner, Thomas P. Gibson, age 73, of Lanesville, Indiana, was sentenced to 70 months in federal prison, followed by two years of supervised release, and former Chief Operating Officer Michael Steven McDonald, age 61, of Lanesville, Indiana, was sentenced to 57 months in federal prison, followed by two years of supervised release, for their parts in a multi-million dollar check kiting scheme. There is no parole in the federal system.
“Gibson and McDonald caused widespread damage to the livestock industry and devastating harm to numerous individual cattle farmers in Kentucky and elsewhere. Many other businesses associated with the livestock industry were also damaged by the Eastern Livestock fraud. These lengthy prison sentences hold Gibson and McDonald accountable for their federal crimes,” commented U.S. Attorney Hale. “Additionally, our seizure of $4.7 million from the defendants has preserved a significant portion of the crime proceeds, which will ultimately be distributed to victims of the fraud. Equitable disbursement of these funds to victims will be accomplished through a coordinated process involving two Eastern Livestock bankruptcy cases pending in the Southern District of Indiana, and the forfeiture action brought by my office in federal court in the Western District of Kentucky.”
Eastern Livestock was one of the largest cattle brokerage businesses in the United States, processing cattle sales and operating branch facilities in eleven states, including Kentucky, until its closure on November 2, 2010. According to the plea agreement, between August 9, 2004 and November 2, 2010, in Nelson County, Kentucky, and elsewhere, the defendants Gibson and McDonald, engaged in an extensive check-kiting fraud in order to induce Fifth Third Bank to release funds from a $32 million line of credit issued by the bank in favor of Eastern Livestock Company. The check-kiting scheme caused grossly inflated balances in accounts maintained by Eastern Livestock with the bank. To further support the fraudulent scheme, the defendants caused false and fraudulent documents to be submitted on a daily basis to Fifth Third, which contained grossly inflated accounts receivable figures. The U.S. mail and/or commercial interstate carrier service was used in the execution of the scheme in that the defendants caused checks to be issued from Eastern Livestock accounts, which were mailed to business associates who agreed that checks from their business accounts could be deposited into the Eastern Livestock account at Fifth Third, thereby temporarily inflating the account balance. Two such Eastern Livestock checks in the amounts of $94,374.48 and $98,101.93, were delivered via U. S. Postal Service to a designated address in Nelson County, Kentucky, on or about September 5, 2008. When Fifth Third closed Eastern Livestock's accounts in November 2010 because of the check-kite, Fifth Third, Wells Fargo, and hundreds of cattle sellers, auction houses, and other people who had done business with Eastern Livestock sustained losses. The cattle sellers had received Eastern Livestock checks in payment for cattle, and these checks were dishonored by Fifth Third Bank and returned when Eastern Livestock's accounts were closed. At the time, there were insufficient funds to cover the millions of dollars in outstanding Eastern Livestock checks issued by the defendants.
U.S. Attorney Hale commended the collaborative investigation involving the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marisa Ford, and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney James R. Lesousky, Jr. Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy Sullivan is prosecuting the civil forfeiture claim.

Linden Board Sale Report

Base Weight
Delivery Date
750 (2 Loads)
May 24-31
825 (1 Load)
May 28-June 6
825 (1Load)
May 23-29
835 (1 Load)
May 29-31
850 (2 Loads)
May 23-28
835 (3 Loads)
May 28-31
925 (2 Loads)
May 23-28
940 (1 Load)
May 23-28

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Corn Planting Update

The 2013 U.S. corn crop is 71% planted.

Corn Planted - Selected States
[These 18 States planted 92% of the 2012 corn acreage]
                 :            Week ending            :           
      State      :  May 19,  :  May 12,  :  May 19,  : 2008-2012 
                 :   2012    :   2013    :   2013    :  Average  
                 :                    percent                    
Colorado ........:     93         32          59          82     
Illinois ........:     98         17          74          77     
Indiana .........:     96         30          64          65     
Iowa ............:     97         15          71          92     
Kansas ..........:     97         31          70          88     
Kentucky ........:     98         39          56          75     
Michigan ........:     83         32          78          71     
Minnesota .......:     97         18          70          84     
Missouri ........:     98         28          70          77     
Nebraska ........:     97         43          84          92     
North Carolina ..:     99         92          96          99     
North Dakota ....:     92         18          61          62     
Ohio ............:     93         46          74          58     
Pennsylvania ....:     72         48          70          60     
South Dakota ....:     91         37          75          69     
Tennessee .......:    100         63          79          89     
Texas ...........:     95         78          84          95     
Wisconsin .......:     79         14          43          68     
18 States .......:     95         28          71          79     

Friday, May 10, 2013

WLAC Press Release

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (May 10, 2013) - For half a century, the Livestock Marketing Association (LMA) has showcased the industry's most talented livestock auctioneers and honored local livestock auction markets annually through its World Livestock Auctioneer Championship (WLAC). On June 14-15 in Montgomery, Ala., LMA will celebrate the 50th anniversary of this prestigious event when 31 semi-finalists gather at the Montgomery Stockyards to compete for the 2013 title.
This year's World Livestock Auctioneer Championship qualifying and semi-final events highlight the professional auctioneering skills and livestock marketing knowledge of hundreds of auctioneers who competed. The WLAC contest is produced by LMA, the leading trade association serving livestock auction markets, during its annual convention as a way to promote the profession and the auction method of marketing livestock.
During this year’s annual convention, which will be held at the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel just prior to the WLAC contest, the livestock marketing industry will learn the latestupdates on animal handling, animal disease traceability andother government and industry issues. In addition, a number of educational workshops will be held to help auction market owners and employees deal with animal rights groups, adapt new technologies and improve their business communications, all to add greater value to the farmers and ranchers they serve.
Last June, Bailey Ballou of Elgin, Okla., was selected the 2012 champion at the WLAC held in Turlock, Calif. During the past year, Ballou has toured North America's livestock auctions to share his auctioneering skills with other livestock markets and producers and served as a spokesperson for the industry. Because of this important, high-profile role, each WLAC semi-finalist must establish their knowledge of the livestock marketing business, and demonstrate their ability to express that knowledge with clarity, in an interview session held on Friday of the contest.
The Saturday, June 15, auctioneering competition of the WLAC is a live sale where the contestants auction cattle to actual bidders in the seats. Contestants are judged on the clarity of their auction chant; vocal quality; their ability to catch bids and conduct the sale; and finally, if the judge would hire this auctioneer for their own livestock market. Judges are livestock market owners and managers, and many have competed in this competition in the past.
This year's finals will be hosted at Montgomery Stockyards LLC and the titles of World Livestock Auctioneer Champion, reserve champion (2nd place), and runner-up (3rd place) will be presented at the awards ceremony on Saturday night. The champion will take home $5,000 in cash, a custom diamond ring, trophy and other prizes, as well as the use of a brand new pickup for the year.  The reserve and runner-up champions will take home $2,000 and $1,000, respectively.
For the first time, RFD-TV will broadcast the semi-final and final rounds of the contest live starting at 8 a.m., Central, Saturday, June 15, from Montgomery Stockyards, 4500 Mobile Highway outside of Montgomery. The event is open to the public free of charge. Check your RFD-TV guide for program times in your area. The winners will be announced that evening at the WLAC awards ceremony, which can be watched live at
About the World Livestock Auctioneer Championship:
In June 1963, Livestock Marketing Association held the first annual World Livestock Auctioneer Championship (WLAC) at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Denver, Colorado. The purpose: to spotlight North America's top livestock auctioneers and to salute their traditionally important role in the competitive livestock marketing process. That year, 23 auctioneers from the United States and Canada sold the same 20 head of cattle over and over again.
The contest was held at hotels until 1967, when it traveled to its first LMA member market. Since then the WLAC has been held in conjunction with the LMA Marketing Industry Convention at member markets around the U.S. and Canada. Recent locations include California, Missouri, Montana, Tennessee, Kansas, South Dakota and Alberta, Canada.
Though the rules have changed, the enthusiasm for the competition hasn't. On average each year, nearly 100 auctioneers enter the qualifying events. The championship consists of three stages: the regional qualifying events held at different markets around the country, followed by the semi-finals and the finals that are held each June in conjunction with the LMA Annual Meeting. Contestants competing for the World Champion title must be 18 years old, employed as a livestock auctioneer and sponsored by a local auction market that shares in the favorable publicity generated by the winners.
LMA is proud to sponsor an event that brings together North America's top livestock auctioneers in a competition that showcases professionalism and promotes the auction method of selling livestock.
About the Livestock Marketing Association:
Livestock Marketing Association (LMA), headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, is North America's largest membership organization dedicated to supporting, representing and communicating with and for the entire livestock marketing sector. LMA has approximately 800 member businesses across the U.S. and Canada. For more information, visit

Thursday, May 9, 2013