Bernard von NotHaus
Bernard von NotHaus

The U.S. Attorney reported that former Hawaii businessman, Bernard von NotHaus, 67, was convicted March 18 by a federal jury of “making, possessing, and selling his own coins.”

That announcement came from Anne M. Tompkins, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. Von NotHaus went on trial for eight-days in North Carolina and was convicted after the jury deliberated less that two hours.

Von NotHaus, who moved to the mainland US, but came to Hawaii to hold seminars, is the founder and creator of a currency known as the Liberty Dollar.

Specifically he was found guilty by of “making coins resembling and similar to United States coins; of issuing, passing, selling, and possessing Liberty Dollar coins; of issuing and passing Liberty Dollar coins intended for use as current money; and of conspiracy against the United States.”

The investigation, which looked into Von NotHaus’ minting of $7 million, and his founding of the organization National Organization for the Repeal of the Federal Reserve and Internal Revenue Code, was launched in 2005 and concluded in 2008.

Von NotHaus remains free on bond.  No date has been set for sentencing. Tompkins said he faces a sentence of up to 15 years’ imprisonment on count two of the indictment and a fine of not more than $250,000; and a prison sentence of five years and fines of $250,000 on both counts one and three. She said the United States also is seeking the forfeiture of approximately 16,000 pounds of Liberty Dollar coins and precious metals, currently valued at nearly $7 million. His forfeiture trial being held before United States District Court Judge Richard Voorhees will start on April 4, 2011.

“Attempts to undermine the legitimate currency of this country are simply a unique form of domestic terrorism,” U.S. Attorney Tompkins said in announcing the verdict. “While these forms of anti-government activities do not involve violence, they are every bit as insidious and represent a clear and present danger to the economic stability of this country,” she added. “We are determined to meet these threats through infiltration, disruption, and dismantling of organizations which seek to challenge the legitimacy of our democratic form of government.”

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