Troy Brant of 114768 Emuness Road Jacksonville, Florida, was arrested by the Wauchula Police Department for 18 various Felony charges and Four Misdemeanor charges stemming from a several month investigation into alleged fraudulent practices, while he was owner of Brant funeral Home in Wauchula.
Brant, a licensed funeral director, embalmer and pre-needs sales person owned and operated Brant Funeral Home located as 404 West Palmetto Street, Wauchula, FL between the years of 2003 and 2010. During his ownership Brant sold pre-needs or pre-arranged funeral services to various persons throughout the community that learned of the services by word of mouth or advertisements in the local media. Customers were shown caskets, vaults and various other services that may be needed for their own future funeral, or the funeral of a family member and was given a final price for the package.
Customers were under the misconception the monies paid for the services would be placed in trust by one of the approved trust funds guided by the State of Florida as required by Florida Statutes Chapter 497, and would be available when the unfortunate time came. Brant was not registering the services with the trust funds as required and was instead directing all the monies paid by the victims to be deposited in one of several checking accounts owned by him for the Brant Funeral Home business. The funds were then used to pay normal bills for the Funeral Business or for personal expense. Brant admitted during his first interview by detective Harrison on April 11, 2012 in Jacksonville, FL. that he did unlawfully deposit and use the victim's money to support the business but never intended to hurt anyone and believed he could cover the Funerals as they occurred.
During the year of 2006 Brant was unable to renew his pre-need sales license but continued to sell pre-needs services to unsuspecting victims. The discrepancies in the contracts started to surface after a new Funeral Home business began at the same location. The Department of Finance, Division of Funeral and Cemetery Services was contacted and an investigation into various license violations began. Investigator Helms reviewed the contracts, interviewed witnesses then forwarded the information to the Wauchula Police Department for an investigation into possible criminal violations. Wauchula Police Detectives subpoenaed bank records from several accounts belonging to Brant during the time period and started the process of comparing the victim's cancelled checks to Brant's deposits.
Detectives presented the facts to the 10th Judicial State Attorney's office on Monday April 23rd for review and an Arrest Warrant was signed by Circuit Judge Ezelle. Brant was later arrested by Detectives of the Wauchula Police Department.
Detectives are requesting any persons that may have done pre-needs business with Troy Brant or Brant Funeral Home to contact their local Funeral Home and verify the pre-needs contract is valid or contact the Wauchula Police Department.
The community can stay informed of updates on this and other cases by visiting www.wauchulapolice.com or Wauchula police on Facebook.