Lochmiller Jr. guilty of fraud

The son of the owner of Valley Investments, which collapsed last year with more than $30 million in investor funds, pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges that could land him in prison for 15 years.

No sentencing date for Philip Rand Lochmiller Jr. was set, but the sentencing will take place in Grand Junction, said Jeff Dorschner, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Denver.

Philip Rand Lochmiller Sr., meanwhile, faces trial in February in connection with the collapse of the investment company that has been described as a Ponzi scheme.

The younger Lochmiller pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Philip Brimmer to charges of conspiracy to commit securities and mail fraud and to money laundering, Dorschner said.

The younger Lochmiller is the first of two employees to reach an agreement with prosecutors.

Another employee of Valley Investments, Shawnee Carver, is set to enter a guilty plea to Brimmer on Thursday.

No decision has been made on prosecutors’ request to conduct the elder Lochmiller’s trial at the federal courthouse in Grand Junction. Many investors who invested in Valley Investments live in or near western Colorado. Many also are elderly, making it difficult for them to attend a trial at the federal building in downtown Denver, prosecutors have noted.


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