Notorious businessman heading to prison

ST. JOSEPH A notorious Michiana businessman with connections to a multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme is heading to prison.

The Herald Palladium reports that John Bertuca has been sentenced to one year jail time for filing a false tax return, and he must pay $111,000 in restitution.

Early next year, he'll testify in a trial over a Ponzi scheme, involving 800 families and 46 million of their hard-earned dollars.

Bertuca is the owner of the Bertuca Bonding and Insurance Company in St. Joseph. He also owns the building where the Pump House Grill used to be located. The restaurant closed earlier this year amid a highly-publicized financial dispute. Bertuca used to own Casey's Bar and Grill in New Buffalo.

Bertuca accepted $345,000 in "marketing expenses" from two men accused in the Ponzi scheme. He denies any knowledge of the wide scale rip-off.

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