DURHAM — Steven Eugene Edwards, 51, a former Durham resident convicted of fraud and tax evasion, was sentenced in federal court this week to 12 1/2 years in prison.
Judge William Osteen also ordered Edwards to pay $4.4 million in restitution to his victims, to forfeit $3.89 million in proceeds traceable to the scheme and to pay a fine of $100,000.
In 1999 and 2000, Edwards was an officer and manager of Magna Corp., Nations Group and Integrity Group, professional employer organizations in Durham and Topeka, Kan., according to federal prosecutors.
Edwards pleaded guilty to collecting millions of dollars in healthcare and workers' compensation insurance premiums from client companies, then failing to obtain or continue such insurance coverage, federal prosecutors said.
Prosecutors said he left many thousands of workers with unpaid insurance claims while buying homes and motorcycles.