Missouri pastor to be sentenced for wire fraud
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Federal sentencing was scheduled for a St. Louis-area pastor who admitted he bilked $3.3 million from more than a dozen mostly elderly investors.
Forty-year-old Jim Staley of Wentzville was to be sentenced Wednesday in St. Louis. That's where he pleaded guilty in April to four felony counts of wire fraud.
Prosecutors said Staley was an insurance agent before forming a financial consultancy and becoming a sales agent for California-based B&B Equity Group.
Though he wasn't registered in Missouri to deal securities, he sold bundled life insurance policies even after the Missouri secretary of state's office told him to stop in 2009.
Staley's attorney insists the fraud had nothing to do with his clergy work. A prosecutor said some victims invested because he was a "nice religious man."