Convicted NC billionaire wants to build Macon mask plant, friend tells judge

 Greg Lindberg wants to build the world’s largest COVID-19 mask factory in Macon — if he can stay out of federal prison.

But in a character-reference letter to a judge, a business associate called Lindberg “generous, magnanimous, upstanding, fair-minded and incredibly brilliant.”

He also wrote that Lindberg wants to build a massive PPE plant in Macon. He would call it the USA Mask Company and employ “minority ex-cons.”

Stephen Adams, the executive director of the Macon-Bibb Industrial Development Authority, declined to comment on whether they’ve heard from Lindberg.

He said they often have preliminary talks with developers and vet them thoroughly, but maintain confidentiality until a deal is complete.

They said Lindberg, 48, is the founder and chairman of Eli Global LLC  and the owner of a second company, Global Bankers Insurance Group.

They say Lindberg and three others promised millions in campaign contributions to North Carolina’s insurance commissioner in exchange for favorable regulatory decisions.

In a news release, his attorney, Brandon McCarthy wrote that Lindberg committed no crime, and he expects that the conviction will be overturned on appeal.

He wrote, “A political contribution is not a crime. Seeking fair regulation is not a crime.”

Dozens of people wrote letters of support to the federal judge before Lindberg was sentenced.

They included friends, employees, his bodyguard, his girlfriend, and a woman serving as surrogate mother for Lindberg and his girlfriend.

That’s where Ronny Vogel came in.

Vogel’s letter to federal judge Max Cogburn describes himself as CFO of Assets America, a Seattle commercial-banking and brokerage firm.

He describes Lindberg as both a client and a friend.

“….Mr. Lindberg, personally I call him Greg, is one of the most generous, magnanimous, upstanding, fairminded, and incredibly brilliant people that I have ever met in my 60 years of living on this planet!” writes Vogel.

He adds, “Right now, Mr. Lindberg is putting together a mask-making manufacturing firm, The USA Mask CompanyTM, that will most assuredly become the USA’s, and within a few years the world’s, largest mask manufacturer with over 1 billion N95 masks made per year (by EOY 2021). The facility will be based out of Macon, GA with over 2.1 million square feet and Mr. Lindberg will employ minority ex-cons from the local community.

This amazing manufacturing plant will most probably become one of the USA’s Strategic PPE (personal protection equipment) Reserves.

This new Lindberg business will produce made in the USA PPE, it will provide countless jobs to the local Macon, GA community and to persons in great need of such jobs. We are excited, encouraged and highly confident that these jobs will help to drastically reduce the recidivism rate of these minority ex-cons.”

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