PEORIA, Ill. -- A Peoria couple who eluded sentencing for nearly 12 years after admitting they defrauded investors of $1.8 million was sentenced on Wednesday.
Nelson Hallahan, 65, aka Andrew Howard Wheeler, must serve a total of 22 ½ years in federal prison. Nelson Hallahan was ordered to serve 210 months (17 ½ years) for the fraud scheme, to be followed by a consecutive term of 5 years for failure to appear.
Nelson’s wife, Janet Hallahan, 55, aka Diane Lee, was ordered to serve 135 months (11 years, 3 months) for her role in the fraud scheme, to be followed by a consecutive sentence of five years for her failure to appear.
The couple was also ordered to pay restitution in
the amount of $1,446,114 to victims of the fraud scheme.
In October, Nelson and Janet Hallahan each pleaded guilty to failure to appear for sentencing on May 4, 2000. Both had pled guilty in January 2000, to defrauding family and
friends of approximately $1.8 million from November 1993 to June 1999, in a scheme that promised investors greater returns than insurance policies and mutual funds.
The Hallahans, however, failed to appear for sentencing and were arrested on May 5, 2012, near Phoenix, Arizona by U.S. Marshals.
The day prior to their arrest, the couple was featured on “America’s Most Wanted”.