PORTLAND – Kaile Warren, the embattled founder of the Rent-A-Husband handyman business, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to three felony charges related to investments in his company.

Last week, a grand jury in Cumberland County returned an indictment charging the Windham resident with theft by deception, securities fraud and sales of unregistered securities from 2003 to 2009.

Except for a few minor elaborations, the charges are identical to the original indictment against Warren, from December. Warren, 50, had already pleaded not guilty to those charges.

Warren and his defense lawyer, Daniel Lilley, said the state prosecutor, Assistant Attorney General Michael Colleran, asked the grand jury last week to indict Warren on three additional counts.

In a highly unusual move, Warren waived his constitutional rights and testified during the proceedings. The grand jury declined to add any charges, Lilley said.

“It was intense, it was emotional. I felt very strongly that the truth needed to be heard,” Warren said on Wednesday.

“I’m very concerned that (Colleran) did not give the grand jury an opportunity to undo or rescind the original indictment,” Lilley said. “I’m concerned that he is operating in bad faith.”

Colleran said he is prohibited from commenting on grand jury matters. “What I can say is that the grand jury last week did return a three-count indictment against Mr. Warren,” he said.

Warren maintains that if there was anything illegal about the deals made between investors and Rent-A-Husband, his former law firm, Preti Flaherty, is responsible because it handled the paperwork and guided him through the process.

In February, the managing partner of Preti Flaherty said the firm had not represented Warren in almost two years.

“He has apparently expressed the position that his legal difficulties may be attributed to the actions of this law firm, and not to his own,” Jonathan Piper said in a written statement. “We would prefer not to make further comment for fear of prejudicing Mr. Warren’s defenses to the charges against him.”

According to the Maine Office of Securities, Warren owes more than $1.6 million on promissory notes to investors.

 

Staff Writer Trevor Maxwell can be contacted at 791-6451 or at:

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