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OC resident sentenced to 8 years for Ponzi scheme

A 70-year-old Orange County man has been sentenced to eight years in federal prison for running a Ponzi scheme that bilked more than two dozen investors out of nearly $3 million.

The Orange County Register reports ( Timothy Melvin Murphy was also ordered Tuesday to pay $2.95 million in restitution.

Murphy pleaded guilty last year to one count of mail fraud.  Prosecutors say he ran the scheme through his Orange-based business, Capital Investors Inc. The government estimates Murphy’s 26 victims lost $2.95 million they invested over a decade.

Murphy used the money for personal expenses, including refurbishing and maintaining a classic car collection. He also paid for treatments at a weight-loss clinic.  Murphy retired as a colonel in the California Army National Guard in 2006.