- Associated Press - Monday, November 9, 2015

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - An Arizona man has been sentenced to a three-year federal prison term in New Mexico for wire fraud.

Prosecutors say 55-year-old Joseph Lawler, of Peoria, also was sentenced Monday to three years of supervised release and ordered to pay nearly $479,000 in restitution to his victims.

Lawler pleaded guilty in June to all 12 counts of a superseding indictment.

He was accused of engaging in a scheme to defraud investors of hundreds of thousands of dollars between August 2010 and July 2014.

Prosecutors say Lawler created a company and told investors their money would be invested in gold, silver, real estate or trust funds.

Instead, Lawler allegedly used the money to pay for his own living expenses and vehicles and pay other investors who threatened to report him to authorities.

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