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Interior Alaska couple accused of defrauding investors in fake marijuana business, charges say

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A Delta Junction couple accused of taking more than $700,000 from investors for a fake marijuana “Bud and Breakfast” business now faces federal charges.

Brian and Candy Corty were indicted by a federal grand jury in April on charges of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

The Cortys opened a bank account and started their business Ice Fog in 2017, and they began offering investors shares of stock to raise money for the company, according to the indictment. They hired and enlisted others to help sell shares, although the indictment does not name anyone else involved.

The couple purchased the Midway Lodge along the Richardson Highway near Delta Junction in 2018 and told investors they were opening it as a “Bud and Breakfast” that they described as a “marijuana theme park,” according to the indictment. They told investors the lodge would include glass ceilings for guests to watch the northern lights from bed, and it would also serve as a place to grow and sell marijuana, the indictment said.

The Cortys told investors that the Alaska Marijuana Control Office had performed inspections and an application to become a licensed grow and dispensary was in the final stages of approval, the indictment said. The business, they said, was expected to earn more than $3.85 million in the first year and over $23 million by the third year, according to the indictment. They told investors to expect a return 30 times larger than their investment, the indictment said.

“The defendants and their co-conspirators made these representations even though they knew Ice Fog had no meaningful current or prospective revenue stream and little to no prospect to obtain a license from the Alaska Marijuana Control Office,” the indictment said.

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