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California Briefing / ORANGE COUNTY

Minister's son accused of fraud

June 21, 2008|David Haldane

A financial planner was arraigned Friday in the theft of more than $2.8 million from elderly people, some of whom he met through his father's church.

Hitomi Tsuyuki, 54, of Coto de Caza could be sentenced to up to 163 years in prison if convicted on charges of felony grand theft and scheming to defraud.

He is accused of encouraging at least 35 victims, many of whom had known him since childhood as their minister's son, to invest in an opportunity he falsely represented as the purchase of tax-free municipal bonds.

Instead, prosecutors say, Tsuyuki deposited the money in his own accounts for personal use.

-- David Haldane

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