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Man of God Gets 6 1/2 Years

SAN DIEGO (CN) - A San Diego pastor was sentenced Monday to 6½ years in federal prison for defrauding a man of more than $12 million. Pastor Brian Keith Tomlinson, 49, spent the money on cars, a house, and took more than $1.3 million of it in cash, prosecutors said.

Tomlinson admitted in a plea agreement that he defrauded a man of $12.8 million, and ducked taxes on it. The money supposedly would be invested in a telephone switch and gold mines in Africa but Tomlinson's sucker got nothing, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

In sentencing him, the judge noted Tomlinson's "history of involvement in fraudulent activities going back to the 1990s."

Attempts to find what church, if any, Tomlinson was associated with turned up only "a small and likely defunct television ministry," according to San Diego media reports.

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