Jurors sitting in Bart Reagor’s trial in Amarillo Federal Court

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AMARILLO – A 14-person jury was selected on Monday to examine charges alleging that former Reagor-Dykes Auto Group CEO Bart Reagor illegally embezzled millions of dollars from a business loan into his personal bank account.

Reagor, who is on bail, is charged with two counts of bank fraud and one count of making false statements to a bank. If found guilty, he faces up to 90 years in prison.

He is accused of embezzling more than $ 1.7 million from a $ 10 million commercial loan from the International Bank of Commerce into his personal bank account.

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The trial is now scheduled to begin Tuesday in federal court in Amarillo.

Prosecutors, in their trial brief, say they believe Reagor intentionally misled bank officials when applying for the loan, which was to be used as working capital.

Defense attorneys argue that the loan deal allowed Reagor to take the money, which they said represented the money Reagor personally invested in the concession to cover deficits from a disappointing audit of the floor plan, according to court documents.

Lawyers spent the first day of the trial reducing a panel of jurors of more than 80 into a 14-person jury, two of whom will serve as alternates.

During the jury selection process, Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk dismissed 16 potential jurors who told the court the publicity surrounding the Reagor case could affect their ability to be impartial.

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Bart Reagor discusses the claims against the Reagor Dykes Auto Group in a video statement released in June 2019.

Some jurors said they researched the case online out of curiosity.

A juror told the court she had read all of the articles on the case in the Amarillo Globe-News. However, she said she believed she could be a fair and impartial juror.

Another potential juror told the court that she watched coverage of the Reagor case on local television stations. She said she had, to some extent, formed an opinion on the case and agreed with defense attorneys that the Reagor case was an inappropriate case for her.

Meanwhile, the court also dismissed jurors for saying they wanted Reagor to present evidence that would prove his innocence. The demand unduly shifts the burden of proof to Reagor, who enjoys the presumption of innocence.


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