ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri judge on Monday ordered the former head of a failed artificial sweetener plant in Moberly to wear a GPS electronic monitoring device while he awaits trial on felony fraud and forgery charges.
St. Charles County Circuit Judge Daniel Pelikan ordered ex-Mamtek CEO Bruce Cole to wear the device while he is at home, the Columbia Daily Tribune (http://bit.ly/13GereF ) reported. Cole, 65, of Beverly Hills, Calif., was under electronic monitoring when he was freed on bond in March but has been using a radio-and-telephone-based system that only tells officials when he's at home or not at home.
Cole is under house arrest in his home state of California. His bond was reduced from $500,000 to $100,000 in March.
"I am shocked that someone can make a $100,000 bond and still have a public defender," Pelikan said. "And the fact that we are allowing you to live in California is a double shock."
Also during Monday's hearing, Pelikan tentatively scheduled the trial for February. It was the judge's first time seeing Cole after receiving the case on a change of venue from Randolph County.
The Mamtek project was financed with $39 million in bonds issued by the city of Moberly's Industrial Development Authority. The project collapsed after Cole's company missed a bond payment in August 2011.
In addition to criminal charges, Cole faces a civil lawsuit from the federal Securities and Exchange Commission and a bankruptcy suit filed by UMB Bank, the bondholders' trustee.