The man who former employees blame for driving a once vibrant Montana electronics chain into bankruptcy will spend five years in federal prison for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars for his personal use.
Three months after he was convicted of 170 counts of theft and fraud for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from Vanns, former CEO George Manlove finally learned his fate.
Manlove was charged with the complex case in December 2015, years after Vann’s hit the rocks and collapsed in bankruptcy. He fought the charges every step of the way until he was convicted by a federal jury last winter, with the panel accepting the prosecution’s arguments that Manlove had diverted money for trips, jewelry and other personal property.
Prosecutors had recommended Judge Dana Christensen send Manlove to prison for ten years. But his defense attorneys pressed for just one year in a federal detention center.
On Friday afternoon, Judge Christensen split the difference, ordering Manlove to spend just over five years in federal custody, followed by three years of supervised release.
Manlove will remain free, at least until a restitution hearing for his victims in June. He’s already asked to remain free while he appeals the case.