Skip to main content

A 64-year-old southwestern Minnesota farmer is facing federal charges in connection to a multi-million dollar organic grain fraud scheme. 

James Clayton Wolf, of Jeffers, is accused of defrauding grain purchasers by selling non-GMO grains that were falsely labeled as organic, the United States Attorney's Office said Tuesday. He faces three counts of wire fraud and will make his initial court appearance on July 22. 

Court documents state the certified organic farmer, Wolf, repeatedly purchased non-organic corn and soybeans from a grain seller and resold the grain as an organic product. Prosecutors say this happened from 2014 to 2020. Additionally, Wolf also does not have a grain buyers license to make these purchases.

Wolf is also alleged to have grown conventionally farmed crops using chemical fertilizers and pesticides, which is in violation of organic farming standards. He lost his organic farming certification in 2020, but he continued to sell non-GMO grain falsely labeled as organic through an "associate," court records show.

In all, Wolf made over $46 million in the wire fraud scheme.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, organic farming uses non-GMO seeds and crops that are grown without chemicals and fertilizers. It generates higher prices at market than non-organic crops. 

Wire fraud is a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison, according to federal sentencing guidelines.

Next Up

28987158675_df8dbfc6df_o

3 dead after plane crashes into house in Hermantown

Two people in the house were uninjured.

FeDh7pUWAAg3NMd

Destructive fire at Maple Grove greenhouse and nursery

The fire burned early Sunday morning at a longtime Maple Grove greenhouse and nursery.

st. cloud state university hockey

SCSU player hospitalized after being taken off ice on stretcher

Luedtke was checked into the boards in the first period and down for a reported 10-15 minutes.

Amber alert wisconsin

Amber Alert in Wisconsin: Search for missing 15-year-old girl

Police believe 15-year-old Kryssy King may be with a 22-year-old man.

Screen Shot 2022-10-01 at 10.18.12 AM

3 St. Paul fast food restaurants robbed in space of an hour

The thieves struck between 7:15 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Screen Shot 2022-10-01 at 9.06.40 AM

What to do with the Kmart site? Minneapolis wants your ideas

The project will connect Nicollet Avenue south of Lake street and north of the Midtown Greenway, reestablishing a street grid.

Screen Shot 2022-10-01 at 7.53.55 AM

Crowd evacuated at end of homecoming football game in Brooklyn Park

Police blamed 'unruly teens' in the stands and some who were trying to enter the stadium.

gas

State to help 44 Minnesota gas stations add E15 pumps

The yellow 88 button is coming to more gas stations in Minnesota.

Screen Shot 2022-09-30 at 4.54.42 PM

FBI, police investigating bank robbery at Edina's 50th and France

An ATM technician was robbed by four men at a U.S. Bank.

Ethan Glynn

Paralyzed Bloomington football player begins rehabilitation in Colorado

Ethan Glynn is at a world-renowned rehabilitation hospital.

Related

money hundred dollar bills

Charges: California woman embezzled over $1M from MN employer

Mai Xiong faces several federal charges in the case.

Hakeem Muhammad

Minnesota murder suspect charged for crash that killed 6-year-old

Hakeem Waheed Muhammad, 28, faces multiple charges for two separate cases.

Dennis Molla

Charges: Trump fan who blamed BLM/Antifa for fire started it himself

The 29-year-old from Brooklyn Center is facing two wire fraud charges.

Teppanyaki Grill Supreme Buffet in Fridley, Minn.

Minnesota restaurant 'ghost owners' charged with 26 felonies

Sufeng Zheng, 46, and Ting Gui Zheng, 51, face 26 felony-level tax fraud charges.

Screen Shot 2022-06-17 at 12.24.57 PM

Minnesota man dies after becoming 'fully engulfed' in grain bin

A 36-year-old co-op employee from Pemberton was pronounced dead at the scene.

How a grain elevator fraud has rocked the town of Ashby

State officials are urging farmers to file claims to cover their losses.

State Patrol

2 dead in separate Minnesota crashes at the weekend

An 88-year-old St. Cloud woman and a 56-year-old South Dakota woman died in each crash.