Edgewood man indicted on theft and tax charges

September 11, 1994|By Mike Farabaugh | Mike Farabaugh,Sun Staff Writer

A Harford grand jury has indicted an Edgewood businessman on charges of embezzlement and theft of nearly $230,000, failing to pay more than $6,500 in state sales tax and failing to file state personal income tax returns for the last three years, Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr. said Friday.

The defendant, John Philip Seisman Sr., of the 1800 block of Parkwood Drive, Forest Hill, is the owner and operator of Reeds at Bay View, a mobile home park at 3001 Pulaski Highway in Edgewood.

The indictment, filed Wednesday in Harford Circuit Court, alleges that between November 1992 and July 1993, Mr. Seisman bilked six prospective homebuyers through his company, Manufactured Housing Discounters Inc. The sales office for that company has been removed from its former Pulaski Highway site and the company's telephone has been disconnected.

Each victim paid in advance for one of the six homes that Mr. Seisman never ordered after collecting the full purchase price, Mr. Curran said.

"What's especially troubling about this case is that the victims have not only lost substantial amounts of money, they are potentially liable for loans they made on mobile homes they don't even have," Mr. Curran said.

The attorney general also said Mr. Seisman defrauded Hubert L. and Elizabeth Orr of almost $42,000 by agreeing to sell their home and pay off an existing loan on it.

Mr. Curran said Mr. Seisman sold the home, but used the money "for his own use and benefit."

Christopher Romano, an assistant attorney general who conducted the investigation that led to the indictment at the request of Harford State's Attorney Joseph I. Cassilly, said he would not reveal how much money he believes Mr. Seisman earned during 1991, 1992 and 1993, the years for which the tax charges are alleged.

"That amount and the amount of taxes owed is part of what we must prove during a trial, so I will not specify a specific amount," he said.

Aberdeen Proving Ground Federal Credit Union, which provided financing to six of its members to pay Mr. Seisman for the mobile homes, filed a $2.2 million civil lawsuit against him in Harford Circuit Court on Aug. 23.

The indictment alleges that the Orrs, who are not part of the credit union's suit, were defrauded of $3,267 they gave Mr. Seisman as a down payment.

The civil lawsuit and the indictment list these people as victims and their alleged losses:

* David J. Danielczyk, $34,855.

* Harry T. Smith and Diane J. Snee, $35,411.

* Robert W. Sears, $33,578.

* Mark E. and Dawn M. Taylor, $45,320.

* Charles T. Walpole, $41,992.

* Paul C. and Julia M. Newman, $34,960.

The civil lawsuit seeks restitution and $2 million in punitive damages.

Mr. Curran said that if Mr. Seisman is convicted on all criminal indictment charges, he could receive maximum penalties of 15 years in state prison and a $1,000 fine for each of the seven theft counts, five years in prison for each of the seven embezzlement counts and five years and a $5,000 fine for each of the four tax counts.

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