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A Santa Cruz man was indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury on eight counts of wire fraud after he allegedly stole $500,000 from investors in his company, according to federal prosecutors. Robert Rinehart, 49, allegedly told investors in his company, Argent Development Group, that he was buying, improving and selling foreclosed properties, prosecutors said.
In reality, prosecutors say he was stealing their deposits and using them to pay for his personal living expenses. Rinehart made his initial appearance in federal court in San Jose Thursday, and was released on a $50,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court on Jan. 16, 2013, before Judge Lucy H. Koh. Each count of wire fraud carries a potential sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. s
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