St. Louis-area man sentenced to prison for real-estate fraud

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ST. LOUIS (AP) _ A suburban St. Louis man has been sentenced to five years and eight months in federal prison for defrauding lenders of more than $1 million.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/1GBDbpI) reports that 54-year-old Ronald L. Roberts of Town and Country was sentenced Friday in St. Louis.

He pleaded guilty last July to charges of mail and wire fraud.

Authorities say Roberts solicited personal loans for a phony real estate deal connected to property he purported to own near Poplar Bluff. Roberts actually owned a small parcel more than 10 miles away in the Butler County town of Neelyville with a market value of less than $30,000. The property also was tied up by a judgment of more than $13 million against Roberts.