The Missouri Iron County Mountain Echo ran the following story on August 15th:
A former Ironton Funeral Home Director has pleaded guilty to two counts of stealing in Iron County Circuit Court. The charges stem from the sale of pre-need funeral plans. George Treaster of Ironton entered a plea of guilty to two counts of theft/stealing where the value of the property or services is $500 or more but less than $25,000. Treaster is the former owner of White Funeral Home in Ironton. The funeral business is no longer in operation and the building and lot were sold to the county. Treaster received a sentence of seven years incarceration with the Missouri Department of Corrections on each count, with the execution of the sentence suspended. He was placed on supervised probation for five years. The court further ordered restitution to the victims of approximately $30,000 and ordered Treaster to spend 120 days in the Iron County Jail. According to Iron County Prosecuting Attorney Brian Parker, the suspended execution of sentence means that if Treaster violates his probation, he will be required to spend 14 years in the penitentiary. “Under a suspended execution of sentence, a person is a felon for the rest of their lives,” Parker said. “As part of the terms of his probation he must serve 120 days in the Iron County Jail.”
To avoid 14 years in prison, the Missouri funeral director has agreed to repay $30,000 of consumer funds that he applied to his business rather than deposit to a trust pursuant to Missouri’s preneed law. The funeral director had initially sought to sell his preneed contracts to other funeral homes, but those efforts failed with the funeral director could not produce preneed examination reports. A source advises that 120 days in the Iron County ‘dungeon’ will be no picnic.