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Barn Fraud Case Closed; Plaintiffs Awarded $200K In Damages

After nearly three years of pursuing justice, it’s case closed for two local people scammed by a Rigby couple on Craigslist.

On March 30, a jury in Jefferson County ordered Todd and Amy Ostrovsky to pay a total of $200,000 in fraud damages.

Attorney Allen Browning, who represented the plaintiffs, said the scam happened back in 2009, but then the Ostrovkys took off and nothing could move forward until they were found a year later.

Browning represented counseling group Pathways, Inc. and Denice DeFrancis of Blackfoot.

He said the Ostrovskys had advertised a barn for sale on Craigslist, asking $13,000 for what they claimed was worth $80,000.

Both DeFrancis and Pathways, Inc. met with the couple and bought the barn, said Browning, but neither one ended up with the barn or their money back.

On March 30, a jury ordered the Ostrovskys to jointly pay $20,000 to each DeFrancis and Pathways, Inc. On top of that, Todd and Amy individually have to pay $45,000 to DeFrancis and $35,000 to Pathways, Inc.

“We’re happy,” said Browning. “We were just looking for justice to be done and I think it was done.”

Browning said as far as he knows the Ostrovskys have gone back into hiding.

Browning said the couple were also charged criminally for felony grand theft. But in a plea deal with prosecutors, he said Todd’s charge was reduced to petit theft and Amy’s dropped altogether, under the condition they returned the original $13,000 back to both parties, which they did.

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