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Lawsuit: Reditus CEO “looted” company for personal, family gain


Published: Mar. 21, 2022 at 7:00 PM CDT
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PEKIN (Heart of Illinois ABC) - Indicted on six-year-old federal tax fraud charges last week, we are now learning the CEO of Reditus Laboratories is being accused of far more.

An ongoing Tazewell County civil lawsuit filed in 2021 accuses Aaron Rossi of taking money from the company to fund his own extravagant lifestyle, largely at the expense of Illinois taxpayers. New filings Monday seek to remove him from the day-to-day management of the company.

In hundreds of pages of court filings, Rossi’s former business partner James Davie alleges Rossi shut him out of the company while paying himself and his family excessively. Some of those court documents are redacted or sealed, including details about the specifics of Reditus’ financials. That’s something Davie’s attorney Peter S. Lubin is seeking to reverse.

“He thinks he can run Reditus Labs in any way he sees fit. He cannot,” Lubin said. “The millionaire and billionaire class don’t get special treatment in court to hide their dirty laundry simply because it is embarrassing.”

The long list of complaints accuses Rossi of paying himself company funds to fund a lavish lifestyle, complete with private jets, a fleet of luxury vehicles and donations to politicians, hospitals and colleges, according to open records. Founded in 2019 shortly before the pandemic, much of the company’s money comes from Illinois taxpayers, to the tune of more than $220 million in state-awarded COVID testing contracts, in addition to other contracts with other private enterprises.

“The Illinois LLC Act requires him to be a steward for the community and Reditus Labs 300+ employees, especially because Reditus Labs benefitted from such large public funds,” Lubin said.

Since his tax fraud indictment, some of Rossi’s lawyers have asked to be removed from the case. Monday filings seek the company be placed into receivership, effectively barring Rossi from running the company for its own protection.

A Reditus spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment Monday, but Rossi has appeared on Heart of Illinois ABC several times, discussing COVID trends and testing demand. In fact, Reditus has become an integral part of Pekin’s community and was honored last year by Pekin mayor and State Representative Mark Luft.

“Not knowing all of the details, it would be hard for me to formulate any kind of idea on that situation,” Luft said Monday when asked for comment about the tax fraud investigation.

Some of the documents in the 2021 lawsuit remain under seal but that is also being challenged. The new matters will be heard by a judge later this week.

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