Plagued by controversy and negative press the last three years, Sound of Freedom may be suffering its final deathblow before its officially released. Bizarre statements, threats and fringe associations by its lead actor, Jim Caviezel. Dozens of law enforcement agencies severing ties or downplaying their involvement with Operation Underground Railroad. Mounting criminal investigations into the man and organization that serve as the film’s subject all have lessened the film’s profit potential. Now questions are swirling about the origins of the money used to fund the controversial Sound of Freedom by its lead investor and convicted felon, Andrew McCubbins.
Long before Operation Underground Railroad existed on paper, Tim Ballard dreamed of having his own reality TV or becoming a movie producer. It is, in fact that dream is what sparked the creation of Operation Underground Railroad to begin with.
Concerns over Sound of Freedom financial viability began long before Tim Ballard was able to secure a single dollar. Operation Underground Railroad, Gerald Molen and distribution companies had been over this again and again. Ballard’s go to investors and LDS Hollywood elite had either sunk millions of their own dollars or vouched for Ballard to their personal friends in two other feature films before filming even began, which were nothing more than Tim Ballard’s cow to personally milk. Eaten alive with high “consultation fees” and receiving a large portion of the film’s production budget to “fund missions”, rather than to document them- it’s clear The Abolitionists and Operation Toussaint had two beneficiaries and two beneficiaries alone. Katherine and Tim Ballard.
Production companies, investors and distributors were out millions. The only one’s ahead were Tim and his wife.
Worse, Tim’s own non-profit, Operation Underground Railroad would not receive a dime from what he viewed was “his money”. Even had Operation Toussaint and The Abolitionists turned a profit, Tim Ballard was who would have been paid the most. He had suckered the LDS Hollywood connections with the same feel good, “do it for the children” speech twice, but third time was not a charm for the Ballards.
Due to prior investors getting stiffed over two other Tim Ballard Operation Underground Railroad feature films, The Abolitionists and Operation Toussaint– Ballard had to seek funding elsewhere. Ballard couldn’t use donor money into O.U.R. as a way yo fund the film, since a film is considered an investment. Paul Hutchinson, O.U.R.’s rainmaker was done financing Tim’s “pet projects to make him rich”.
Last year, I interviewed a former associate of Ballard.
“He’s [Tim’s] a horrible businessman, I don’t think he knows how it works or he thinks you’re an idiot. His idea of turning a profit is paying himself investor money first, and you hope the remainder of the money can turn out something profitable. [I was laughing pretty hard, I probably shouldn’t have] No, I’m dead fucking serious. He looked me in my eyes, dead serious, and says “first rule of business is to pay yourself first, right?” when I literally cut him a check and he paid himself first, literally right out of it in front of me”.
That is where another shady, unproven businessman turned bitcoin investor comes in, Andrew McCubbins. The billionaire nobody outside Provo and Draper, Utah heard of.
Latest Biopic trend: When you worked part-time with questionable results
Sound of Freedom the story of Tim Ballard (Jim Caviezel), a former US government agent, who quits his job in order to devote his life to rescuing children from global sex traffickers, has been setback again and again for close to three years. Despite the film’s authenticity being in question, (Ballard envisioned elements used in the script back in 2012 for a reality TV show, before Operation Underground Railroad even existed) and principal filming completed in 2018, which means O.U.R. only existed for 5 years “on paper” and Tim Ballard is already making a biopic on himself?
Court records, witnesses and the largest fraud case in United States history may explain why the film completed nearly three years ago has hit a roadblock for a wide release and may be in legal limbo or much worse, jeopardy.
Just weeks after Lynn Packer announced the Davis County District Attorney’s criminal investigation into Tim Ballard and Operation Underground Railroad back in August 2020 another criminal investigation was being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the U.S. Department of Justice- District of New Jersey Office was piecing together a massive nationwide prescription medication and durable medical equipment telemedicine scheme that turned out to be the largest Medicare fraud case in U.S. history and ranks among some of the largest frauds in American history, a staggering $4.5 Billion. Six individuals were charged in the scheme.
At the time of the indictment of the six, three others admitted their roles in three other health care fraud cases. It is believed that the “three men” who pleaded guilty in an unrelated case at the same time of this indictment, were government witnesses.
Among them was none other than Andrew McCubbins, then 39 of Draper, Utah, the owner of Bronson Medical, a telemedicine company. McCubbins pleaded guilty by videoconference on Sept. 24, 2020, before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty to an information charging him with one felony count each of conspiring to commit wire fraud, conspiracy to commit health care fraud, and conspiring to defraud the United States in connection with a scheme to violate the Anti-Kickback Statute. What is missing in the “indictment” charging McCubbins, is sentencing recommendations by the Assistant U.S. Attorney. The other two in the case that pled guilty, had recommended sentences asked for 5 to 10 years for each count. McCubbins had no such recommendation. McCubbins also was scheduled to be sentenced February 25, 2021.
On February 18, 2021, the Assistant U.S. Attorney requested an immediate hearing and McCubbins sentencing previously scheduled for February 25, 2021, at 11:00 AM is adjourned without date.
After consulting with several legal experts as to why a sentencing date was postponed and why one has not been scheduled for nearly a year, has led some to believe that McCubbins is still acting as a government witness both in federal and state investigations and way be testifying before a grand jury. There are also questions in the court dockets about his income, investments and assets overall. As outlined in his plea agreement and upon conviction for conspiracy under federal statute, Andrew McCubbins is subject to the Department of Justice’s Asset Forfeiture Clause, and Substitute Assets Provisions.
To date McCubbins forfeited his 4,683 square foot, 5 bedroom and 5-bathroom home at 14708 South Draper Woods Cove in Draper, Utah and $1,000,000 cash.