- Associated Press - Thursday, March 5, 2015

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - A California man convicted of operating a multi-million dollar mortgage scam that bilked more than 1,000 homeowners has been sentenced to 24 years in prison.

State Attorney General Kamala Harris announced the sentence Thursday for 46-year-old Alan David Tikal of Brentwood, California. He was convicted in U.S. District Court in Sacramento on 11 counts of mail fraud and one count of money laundering.

Prosecutors say he collected more than $5.8 million from victims, most of them in California.

He instructed them not to pay their original mortgages and ignore correspondence from the lender, promising their debt would be cut by 75 percent.

Federal prosecutors say Tikal spent the money on high-end travel, clothes and cars.

Tikal represented himself and could not be reached for comment on the sentence.



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