A prosecutor’s request to have car broker Scott Radtke of Clovis put back in jail for allegedly using ill-gotten gains to make bail was rejected by a judge Thursday for lack of evidence.
Radtke’s bail was $681,000. He exited jail after paying a $68,100 fee to a bail bondsman.
Radtke, 55, was arrested last month after being charged with dozens of counts of defrauding car buyers, lenders and car dealerships of $2.3 million, a figure the Department of Motor Vehicles said has risen to $2.9 million as more customers have come forward with complaints. Some victims were elderly and charges include financial elder abuse.
Prosecutor Edith Treviso filed a statement from a detective at the Clovis Police Department that he had listened to a jail phone conversation in which Radtke asked his secretary at California Motoring Co. to cash a check from a customer so he could make bail.
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It’s against the law to use ill-gotten gains for bail.
But Fresno County Superior Court Judge Wayne Ellison said the secretary told Radtke no, according to the detective’s statement.
“I’m denying the request temporarily,” he said.
Following the hearing, Treviso said more car customers have contacted authorities and additional charges are likely to be filed.
A preliminary hearing will be held Jan. 25.