Houston repairman sent to prison for defrauding customers

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HOUSTON – A 36-year-old resident of Sugar Land has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction arising out of a mail fraud conspiracy, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Mark Ricky Mitchell pleaded guilty Jan. 16.

Today, U.S. District Judge Kenneth M. Hoyt handed Mitchell a 33-month sentence to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. The court included a condition of supervised release that prohibits Mitchell from engaging in any machine repair business without prior approval. He was further ordered to pay $1,148,156.98 in restitution. 

At the time of his plea, Mitchell admitted he devised a scheme to defraud customers of his machine part repair shop located in Houston. He would make numerous false claims to his customers – that he had facilities in close proximity which would reduce turnaround time, how fast parts could be repaired and that he would provide a quote before beginning work.

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Once he obtained possession of the victims’ parts, Mitchell demanded payment for fraudulent charges before he would return the parts. The charges were significantly more than Mitchell had originally quoted for work that was never performed nor authorized.

The victims suffered a loss of approximately $700,000 as a result of Mitchell’s scheme.

He has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

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