MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) — A North Carolina man was convicted by a South Florida jury of operating fraudulent precious metals investment businesses that took $25 million from investors.
The jury on Thursday found 54-year-old Arthur John Schlecht of Boone, N.C., guilty of conspiracy and wire fraud charges. He faces a maximum 40-year prison sentence plus fines and restitution.READ MORE: Times Square Shooting Suspect Farrakhan Muhammad Taken Into Custody In Florida
Evidence showed that Schlecht’s companies offered people the chance to invest in gold, silver, platinum and palladium bullion that would be stored in vaults for them. In fact, trial testimony showed the companies never purchased any of the bullion in the names of the investors.READ MORE: Israelis In South Florida Monitoring Violence In Home Country, Want It To Stop
Testimony showed Schlecht spent millions of dollars for cars, maid services, home decorations, landscaping, jewelry, and to make payments to family members.
Prosecutors say there were hundreds of victims. Four other defendants pleaded guilty.MORE NEWS: Woman Who Snuck Into American Sr. High Posing As Student To Promote Instagram Account Bonds Out
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