DES MOINES — A 61-year-old southern Iowa woman who persuaded friends and relatives to lend her thousands of dollars has been given four years in prison and ordered to pay more than $680,000 in restitution.
Federal prosecutors said Beverly DeRonde of Pella also must serve three years of supervised release. She'd pleaded guilty to mail fraud.
DeRonde has acknowledged that she fraudulently asked relatives and acquaintances to lend her money so she could buy birthday and anniversary presents to surprise her husband or equipment so he could open a boat shop. She promised to pay them high interest rates.
Instead, she used the money to buy antiques, jewelry and Rolex watches for herself. The scheme ran from 2003 to 2010. — AP