OXFORD, MS (abc24.com) - Prominent Mid-South realtor and former Memphis Tigers basketball announcer Chuck Roberts entered a guilty plea for bank fraud in federal court Thursday.
Roberts admitted to illegally skimming hundreds of thousands of dollars from a Mississippi bank. He waived his right to a trial, choosing instead to enter the guilty plea before a federal judge.
He admits he stole the money, but he's not talking to the media about it. Roberts walked quickly and silently out of Oxford's federal courthouse.
Inside the building, he answered question after question about how he defrauded Citizen's National Bank of more than $443,000.
It happened from January to July of 2008.
Roberts and DeSoto developer Jamie Harris were partners in a company called RH Holdings.
The two took out a $5 million loan for construction of a subdivision called Cherry Hill in Southaven. $150,000 was set aside for engineering services.
Roberts wrote fake bills from the engineering firm to get extra money from the loan. In total, he submitted 17 false invoices totaling $443,540.
When the bank became suspicious, Roberts and Harris lied, blaming the excessive charges on drainage issues.
To this day, Cherry Hill subdivision has not been built.
Roberts will be sentenced in the next 30-60 days. He was released on his own recognizance until then. He faces a maximum 30 years in jail and $1 million fine.
Jamie Harris was arrested in Oxford on Wednesday for his part in this case. He's pleading not guilty and is set go to trial in March. Harris is free on a $5,000 bond.