A federal jury on Tuesday found 51-year-old Ronald David Johnson of Corcoran guilty of scamming investors who thought their money was going to build an RV park for Bakkan oil fields workers.
In 2013, Johnson founded Indoor RV Parks, which was supposed to build and manage cushy, climate-controlled warehouses where oil workers could park their RVs and make use of shared laundry and vending machines. He pitched the premise to four investors, including his own church pastor and an ex-girlfriend, and received more than $2 million.
To this day, the company has not acquired any property for its proposed project.
Instead, Johnson spent about $1.8 million to go on vacation, run his personal cattle farm, buy eight vintage Chevrolets, two properties in Monticello and Maple Lake, and a 17-acre island in Mink Lake, Wright County, according to the indictment.
“Mr. Johnson is a classic con-man who lured investors with empty promises of financial gain,” said Special Agent Richard T. Thornton of the FBI's Minneapolis division. “Mr. Johnson stole millions to support his expensive hobbies and line his pockets.”
A St. Paul jury deliberated just two hours on Tuesday before convicting Johnson on nine counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering. Sentencing will be scheduled later.