- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 22, 2014

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - A Connecticut man has died while awaiting sentencing for operating a fraudulent debt elimination scheme.

Deowraj “Deo” Buddhu was scheduled to be sentenced Friday in federal court in Hartford. He was found guilty last year of multiple charges related to the scheme.

A Wethersfield funeral home says that Buddhu died on Jan. 16 at the age of 71. His attorney had said that Buddhu had life-threatening health problems and sought a reduced sentence.

Prosecutors say in exchange for fees, Buddhu told victims about a government fund that could be used to pay off their mortgages. There was no such fund, and authorities say his victims ended up in foreclosure after he advised them to stop paying their mortgages.

His daughter, Sunita Buddhu, was sentenced to 30 months in prison for selling fictitious financial instruments.

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