In the end, Tim Durham’s own arrogance and sense of entitlement may have been the deciding factor to his fate. In handing down a 50-year prison sentence for Durham, Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson offered three words to describe the disgraced businessman, 50, and his crimes in conning more than 5,000 unsuspecting Fair Finance investors out of $250 million: Deceit, greed, and arrogance.
It’s quite a fall for Durham who once famously threw lavish parties at his Geist Reservoir mansion and drove expensive Bugatti cars.
Durham offered only a brief statement to the court before Judge Magnus-Stinson announced his sentence. What he did not offer, however, was an apology to his victims. Instead, Durham stated that he felt “terrible that they all lost money. My family has lost all of its investments.”
Durham’s 50-year sentence means he’ll likely spend the rest of his life behind bars. Unlike state prisoners, federal inmates are required to serve 85 percent of their sentences. Durham will have to live to the age of 93 to survive his sentence.
Judge Magnus-Stinson also sentenced Fair Finance co-owner Jim Cochran, 57, to 25 years in prison, and Fair Finance CFO Rick Snow to 10 years.
Durham attorney John Tompkins says he plans to appeal his client’s sentence within the next 14 days.
Before Durham’s sentence was announced, several Fair Finance victims spoke about the crime and its effect on their lives. One of the victims was Barbara Lukacik, a 74-year-old nun who lost her life savings of $125,000 to Durham’s scheme.
“What has happened is shameful,” she said in a Nov. 30 story by the Indianapolis Business Journal. “Yes, the economy was weak, but that didn’t give you the right to steal not only my money but all the victims of Fair Financial to use as you wish, for serious greed and pampering. And you say you haven’t hurt anyone; let’s be real. I honestly believe justice must be served because it’s the righteous thing to do.”
As she concluded her testimony, Lukacik turned toward Durham and said, “Shame on you.”
Following the sentencing, Lukacik stated to WRTV Channel 6 that she disappointed Durham failed to show any signs of remorse.
“If he had said he was sorry, that would have meant something,” she said.