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Prison Didn’t Do This Felon Any Good

LOS ANGELES (CN) - A recidivist felon was sentenced Monday to 10 years in federal prison for defrauding people of $10 million in stock scams.

De Elroy Beeler, 56, got out of federal prison in 2005 after serving 3 years, then immediately started another scam, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

A former congressman and an IRS agent also were sentenced to prison for the latest scam.

Beeler pleaded guilty to securities fraud in companies called Bidbay and First Global One.

"After Beeler was charged in the Bidbay case in 2007, he was charged in a second case involving the sale of securities in 2006 and 2007 in a fake energy company called First Global One. Beeler falsely told investors that First Global One would have an initial public offering and that it had business relationships with ExxonMobil Corporation," prosecutors said in the statement.

Beeler has been locked up since 2007, when he was arrested for his most recent scams. He is due back in court in about a month, when U.S. District Judge Dean Pregerson will tell him how much he owes in restitution to "the hundreds of victims of the scam."

Beeler worked with former IRS agent George Tannous in the Bidbay.com scam. Tannous is serving 33 months in federal prison. Beeler got $4.8 million from that scam, prosecutors said.

Former Congressman Wester Shadric Cooley was sentenced to a year and a day in federal prison for tax fraud in the Bidbay scam. Cooley admitted he got $1.1 million from that fraud and failed to report $494,000 on his federal tax return.

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