The owner of a Fargo financial services company charged with 25 felonies had his first hearing Tuesday in Cass County District Court.
Bruce Allen Hager, 49, is charged with six counts of fraud, eight counts of selling unregistered securities and 11 counts of acting as an unregistered agent. He appeared by summons, and Judge Frank Racek released him on personal recognizance.
Hager can challenge the state's evidence at an Aug. 25 hearing.
The charges stem from the sale of shares in three holding companies created to pool money for the purchase of Intellisol stock in 2000 and 2001.
Hager's attorney, Jeff Bredahl, has said his client didn't break the law. Hager has called the charges trumped up and said he never received commission for any of the stock sales.
The Intellisol stock is now worthless. In all, 50 people invested about $2 million in the company, according to a civil suit filed in January.
Michael Volk, a former executive of the now-defunct Intellisol International, was facing charges in Cass County until a prosecutor dropped the four felony counts this month, citing a lack of credible evidence.
Hager, who runs Financial Advisors Brokerage Services, Inc., asked a judge to seal his Cass County case to the public. Prosecutor Trent Mahler signed a joint request for the motion, but Judge Steven McCullough denied it.
The request, filed July 14, said the "sensitive nature of the allegations" could have a significant negative impact on Hager's business, his employees and his clients.