Final defendant sentenced in Petro America securities fraud

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) _ A 46-year-old Arizona man has been sentenced to nearly four years in federal prison for his role in a $10.2 million securities fraud conspiracy that victimized more than 12,000 investors across the U.S. and Canada.

Brian Langenbach of Globe, Arizona, was sentenced Thursday to three years and 10 months without parole and ordered to pay roughly $696,000 in restitution.

Langenbach was one of nine co-defendants who pleaded guilty to illegally selling shares in Kansas City-based Petro America Corp., which claimed to have $284 billion in assets. Five other defendants were convicted at trial.

Prosecutors say defendants illegally sold unregistered stock to people who weren’t eligible to invest in risky startups, many of them poor and elderly churchgoers who were told by their pastors the opportunity was a blessing from God.