A businessman who defrauded his victims of $1.4 million has landed himself in prison for the next seven years.
Roger Lee Andrews, of Coopersville, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Robert J. Jonker on Wednesday to 87 months in federal prison for committing a fraud scheme involving real estate he claimed to own in Indiana.
He was ordered to pay $1,493,870.77 in restitution to the victims of the scheme and was ordered to forfeit an additional $1,408,061.33 to the United States in the form of a money judgment.
Andrews’ request for leniency was rejected by the court, which said he “has shown no remorse whatsoever for perpetrating the fraud and found it mind boggling that Andrews has failed to apologize or explain to the victims how he actually spent their money.”
Andrews was convicted of wire fraud following a jury trial in April 2014.
At trial, the jury heard evidence that Andrews solicited money from friends, business acquaintances and a bank for use in connection with investment property in Indiana.
He told his victims he had non-public “inside information” concerning the value of certain real estate in Indiana and needed funds to make capital improvements to the land to sell it at a substantial profit to the state of Indiana.
In reality, the court said he never owned any property in Indiana, was never involved in any land deals in Indiana, and admitted forging documents that made it appear as though he had a contract to sell the property for more than $900,000.
The court also found Andrews committed perjury while testifying during his trial.
During sentencing the court noted Andrews engaged in a “brazen” fraud scheme to take money from his friends over several years to gamble it away in the stock market.
“The fraud perpetrated by Roger Andrews represents a deplorable abuse of trust,” said U.S. Attorney Patrick Miles Jr. “Sadly, Andrews exploited his decades-long relationships with his victims to swindle them out of substantial amounts of money for his own benefit and enjoyment. This sentence holds Andrews accountable for his reprehensible conduct.”
“When confronted at trial by his victims and evidence of his crimes, Mr. Andrews showed no remorse,” said Paul Abbate, special agent in charge of the FBI Detroit Field Office. “The prison sentence and restitution ordered in this case holds Mr. Andrews accountable for his actions and brings justice to his victims.”