Wardsville man pleads guilty to wire fraud, weapons charges

A Wardsville man, who used to live in Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of violating wire fraud and federal firearms laws.

Federal officials in Pennsylvania said Shawn W. Vaught, 38, of 7525 Hunters Lane, pleaded guilty Thursday to three counts of wire fraud and one count of felon in possession of a firearm.

In connection with the guilty pleas, it was noted that while on release after pleading guilty to a similar wire fraud scheme in September 2012, Vaught defrauded a victim by agreeing to sell four large commercial generators for $1.7 million and obtaining $250,000 from the victim as a down payment.

Vaught used the victim’s funds to purchase a 2013 Ford Edge, a 2011 Dodge Ram 5500 and a trailer, which have all been seized and will be forfeited.

He also transferred money into his bank accounts for personal and living expenses.

Vaught was also found to have unlawfully possessed seven firearms on Jan. 28 in the Western District of Missouri, which were discovered after he was arrested in Wardsville for violating the conditions of his pretrial release on the initial fraud case.

Vaught is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 9.

He faces the possibility of a total sentence of 60 years in prison, a fine of $750,000 or both for the wire fraud violation and 10 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both for the firearm violation.

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