Phoenix businesswoman gets prison for $50M bank fraud scheme

Phoenix businesswoman gets prison for $50M bank fraud scheme
Posted at 3:13 PM, Jul 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-13 18:13:21-04

A Phoenix businesswoman who fraudulently obtaining more than $50 million in bank loans has been sentenced to seven years in federal prison.

Prosecutors say 50-year-old Deborah Ann Weidenhamer also was ordered by a U.S. District Court judge Wednesday to pay full restitution.

Weidenhamer previously pleaded guilty to seven counts of bank fraud.

She was the owner and CEO of American Auction Company Inc., a Phoenix-based business that provided auction and appraisal services.

Despite her business losing money every year since at least 2009, Weidenhamer persuaded multiple banks to lend her money by submitting fabricated financial statements between 2008 and 2013.

Her total line of credit increased from $10 million in 2008 to $55 million in 2015.

Auditors discovered the fraud early last year and lenders declared the loan in default.