DENVER (AP) – A federal appeals court is upholding the sentence for a man who told prosecutors he had engaged in a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors of more than $21 million.

Shawn Merriman was sentenced last year in U.S. District Court in Denver to spend 12 years and seven months in prison and to pay restitution. He had pleaded guilty to one count each of mail fraud and forfeiture.

He was once a bishop in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Merriman had raised questions about how his sentence was calculated, but the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday affirmed his sentence.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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