Liberty Dollar investigations focused on Asheville

Undercover federal agents extensively investigated the Liberty Dollar organization in Asheville, leading to the issue of a seizure warrant on Nov. 9 for a raid on the Liberty Dollar headquarters in Evansville, Ind., according to an affidavit obtained by Xpress.

William Kevin Innes, the regional currency officer for Liberty Dollar in Asheville, is named as an executive committee member of the Liberty Dollar company in the affidavit and federal agents thus made him a major target of their investigation. A cooperating witness and three undercover employees of the FBI joined the Liberty Dollar organization in Asheville, which is cited as one of the top three areas in the country for Liberty Dollar distribution along with Austin, Texas and Berryville, Ark. Over 70 businesses in the Asheville area reportedly agreed to accept the Liberty Dollar.

Liberty Dollars are a private “barter currency” backed by silver and gold. Their advocates claim to be completely within their rights to make and use them, because they do not claim that the currency is legal tender. Innes told Xpress earlier that they’re careful not to call the Liberty Dollars “coins,” and that he had gone to the police himself when the company started up in Asheville to seek assurance that the operation was lawful.

“If we’re criminals, why were we going to the police and being out in the open?” Innes said. He added that the reaction to the raid in Indiana had been “polite and peaceful. They just came in and got what they were after. We’re just peacefully exercising our rights here.”

The affidavit accuses the Liberty Dollar of violating the law by being easily mistakable for federal currency, and distributing gold and silver as an alternate currency. It also calls the organization a “multi-level marketing scheme,” saying that distributors make an average profit of $4.66 off every coin, as the amount of silver contained within a $20 Liberty Dollar is valued at $15.34. The affidavit notes this as part of the grounds for its charges of mail and wire fraud, as the Liberty Dollar’s distributors claim that it is “100 percent backed” by gold and silver.

“The only parties in the process who deal with the ALD [Liberty Dollar] at face value are the unwitting victims left holding the ALD currency after all the co-conspirators have made their money,” the affidavit asserts. It also details $100 referral fees paid to Liberty Dollar Associates who recruited others and the transfer of substantial amounts of money (the non-Liberty Dollar kind) between bank accounts. Because the company is conducting its own business with federal reserve notes, the affidavit concludes, the operation is fraudulent.

The company “uses Federal Reserve Notes (FRN) to conduct business,” the affidavit reads. “FRN’s are used to buy Liberty Dollar currency. This reliance upon FRN’s by a group opposed to FRN’s demonstrates that the American Liberty Dollar monetary system is simply a drain on the United States Government’s monetary system for financial profit via fraudulent means.”

Innes has not yet responded to requests for further comment.

A U.S. Mint press release in 2006 called using Liberty Dollars in place of currency a crime (soon after, undercover investigators reported buying a “The US Mint Can Bite Me” shirt at a Liberty Dollar event). A responding release from Liberty Dollar reasserted that it was not legal tender.

Also in 2006, according to an article in Florida’s Naples Daily News, Claudia Dickens, a spokesperson for the U.S. Treasury Bureau of Engraving and Printing, said that stores could use the Liberty Dollar.

“If a merchant wants to accept Liberty Dollars, that is their right,” Dickens claimed in the article. “As long as the person doesn’t claim it is the legal tender of the land.”

Shortly after the U.S. Mint warning, according to the affidavit, the Liberty Dollar company changed its official name from the National Organization for the Repeal of the Federal Reserve and Internal Revenue Codes (NORFED) to Liberty Services, Inc.

While Innes is named in the affidavit after Bernard Von Nothaus, the founder and CEO of the company, no charges have been filed yet and none of Asheville Liberty Dollar’s assets have so far been confiscated.

— David Forbes, staff writer

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12 thoughts on “Liberty Dollar investigations focused on Asheville

  1. Scott

    “…distributors make an average profit of $4.66 off every coin, as the amount of silver contained within a $20 Liberty Dollar is valued at $15.34.”

    So Liberty Services was able to mint, store, market and deliver the coins for free? That’s amazing!

  2. Nam Vet

    We have a common currency in this country. For those who want to opt out of our currency system, go all the way and leave our country. I for one have little patience for those who whine about how bad it is in the USA, yet want to remain here under the protective umbrella of the US military. Remain and complain, remain and try to make their own country within a country while all the time enjoying the freedoms and opportunity PAID FOR by others. Geez, can’t some people learn to appreciate what we have here? A trip to a third world country would do wonders for those who do not have a scale of reference to appreciate the USA.

  3. Thunder Pig

    If people wanted to preserve the value of their currency, they should invest it…not hoard it, where it’s value will decrease,or in the case of precious metals, where it will just maintain it’s original value.

    For Example, an ounce of gold in 1800, 1900, and 2000 would buy it’s holder a good business suit.

    Try that trick with the value of an ounce of gold in 1800, which was $19.39.

    The value of the dollar has gone down, as any currency will, while the precious metals tend to keep their value. The invested dollar, however, is far better than gold because of compound interest…the most powerful economic engine the capitalist world has ever seen!

  4. Revere Paul

    Love it or leave it says Nam Vet. I want to remain here but NOT under the “protective” (?) umbrella of the U.S. military. The Posse Comitatus Act has been suspended and someday, like in New Orleans, soldiers will be telling us what to do. Even as a vet your guns will be confiscated.

    Our government is run by corporations and banks Mr. Vet. My brother died an early death fighting for what in Viet Nam? I contend he was fighting for corporations and banks. They took your ability to think outside the military indoctrination box at least for now. As for visiting 3rd world countries I would love to without being a part of the military. That is how too many boys travel these days.

    Look deeper into the Fed Mr. Nam Vet, with due respect, and Google General Smedley Butler. I have faith you can overcome your indoctrination. 58,000+ overcame their indoctrination on Vietnamese soil. Come home…..the war is over and we have new domestic battles ahead of us.

    GOOGLE RON PAUL

  5. Nam Vet

    I also support Ron Paul. But neither Ron nor myself will drink the koolaid you are serving. This country is not perfect, nor has it ever been perfect. But we are not a capitalist-bank-corporate hell either.

    I am my own person and have not been indoctrinated…like it sounds you have. You sound like a hate-American socialist. And you couldn’t be farther from the truth of what this country is all about. Ron Paul is a libertarian and sees this country as basically good. We have veered from the libertarian Jeffersonian ideals this country was founded on. We need to get back to LESS government and lower taxes and less involvement in foreign intanglements. Socialism is not only not the answer, but a fast running downspout to a real hell. So who should run the banks and corporations in your world? Hillary Clinton? LOL, think about it, if you are about to think outside your whine-box.

    Things can always get worse. Making your own currency is as stupid as thinking a big powerful nanny government can make your life better. Government bureaucracy running Wal-mart? Or Carolina First? No way. If that’s what you want, move to Cuba. Hey they have free health care there. And a different currency.

    PS, if you hate our banking and corporations so much, stop being a consumer. Give up your car, computer, and every other creature comfort that is produced and sold by corporations. And start putting your money under your mattress. Ooops, mattresses are made by corporations too. :)

  6. Richard Blackgold

    Many factors can affect the value of currency.
    One “usual” value is the ammount of precious metal equivalency backing the paper money in circulation…Precious metal coins are more stable because they carry an inherent value with them. Never a bad idea!
    Below is a link to a documentary that explores (in part) and offers a view that relates to this subject.
    This film viewed with objectivity offers an interesting angle on how “federal money” has come to be,why, who controls and makes it.
    http://www.freedomtofascism.com/

  7. Jay

    I don’t know much about making money but….love it or leave it NamVet?

    I often wonder what makes people like Nam Vet think they have the most accurate ‘truth’ about what ‘this country really is about’. And then to have the nerve to tell people they should leave if their political philosophy doesn’t jive with NamVets.

    I think what Nam Vet is trying to say is….

    “You either side with me or you suck, you hate America, you’re a socialist, did i say you hate america?”

    Basically all the buzz words that come from 24/7 indoctrination programs like Hannity n’ Colmbs, Oreilly, Olberman, Mathews Hardball and all the other clown info-news hosts.

    Nam Vet, I support Ron Paul ALONG SIDE you. Please get off your horse and stand down here with the rest of us.

  8. Nam Vet

    No Jay, YOU do not have a sense of what I am about. You can think whatever you want that’s your right, and I respect it. But I also have the right to disagree, and if you have little gravitas in this area, CALL you on it. If you have not served in the military or served your country in some way, you are at a disadvantage. You do not appreciate what good we have here. If you, or anyone, dislike our country MUCH MORE than you appreciate it, telling you to move out is a reasonable retort. Whining about how unfair the USA is does have it’s limits. Hey there are things I don’t like either. But on the whole, I know the USA is a good place to live, warts and all. So I say to you, investigate the good of this country. And for crying out loud, quite whining. It is unmanly. :)

  9. mel

    “Nam Vet”

    “I am my own person and have not been indoctrinated”

    Now that’s a laugh if I have ever read it. Isn’t indoctrination one of the tenants of military subservience?

  10. mel

    “Nam Vet”

    I also wonder if you consider the current administration “Socialists” since they have raised the national debt higher than any president in 27 years. Also, if you don’t like “Big Government” and socialized programs, would you mind giving up your Social Security check?

  11. M. Tate

    Every time I went to pay for a item with the liberty dollar over the past 3 years, I have ask do they want the Federal Reserve Note i.e.paper money (which is a I.O.U. that our Govt. hopes to repay one day) or the piece of silver ( which is actually worth something)….well guess what…they always take the Liberty Dollar which is made of silver…Hummmm…I once tip a airline employee for switching seats for me and my friend with a liberty dollar silver piece, she was so impressed with it she upgraded our seats to 1st Class which turned out to be a cost of $ 3,600 at no charge to us except for the tip. That piece of silver turned out be a great tip for the airline employee and for us a great upgrade…. Long Live The Liberty Dollar..

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