February 22, 2011
Columbia, Mo. -– Attorney General Chris Koster said today that Circuit Judge James Journey has sentenced Thomas Brandtonies, Jr., to serve 7 years in prison for stealing pre-need funeral funds. Brandtonies in November pled guilty to six counts of stealing pre-need funeral funds, and he was sentenced to serve 7 years concurrent on each count.
Koster said Brandtonies formerly operated Underwood-Brandtonies Funeral Home in Butler, which closed in February 2009. He said Brandtonies assured consumers who bought pre-need funeral plans that their money would be used to pay for their funeral services at their time of death. Missouri law requires that pre-need funeral funds be placed in trust, but instead, Brandtonies used the money for his own purposes.
“Thomas Brandtonies, Jr., defrauded consumers who were trying to make sure their funeral costs would be paid at the time of their death,” Koster said. “The Attorney General’s Office is committed to seeking justice for vulnerable consumers who have suffered at the hands of those who take advantage of them, and I am pleased to see this sentence handed down.”