Phoenix businesswoman gets prison for $50M bank fraud scheme

Posted: Updated:
Prosecutors say 50-year-old Deborah Ann Weidenhamer also was ordered by a U.S. District Court judge Wednesday to pay full restitution. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Prosecutors say 50-year-old Deborah Ann Weidenhamer also was ordered by a U.S. District Court judge Wednesday to pay full restitution. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
American Auctions had been in business for 20 years and had an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) American Auctions had been in business for 20 years and had an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (AP) -

A Phoenix businesswoman who fraudulently obtaining more than $50 million in bank loans has been sentenced to seven years in federal prison.

Prosecutors say 50-year-old Deborah Ann Weidenhamer also was ordered by a U.S. District Court judge Wednesday to pay full restitution.

Weidenhamer previously pleaded guilty to seven counts of bank fraud.

She was the owner and CEO of American Auction Company Inc., a Phoenix-based business that provided auction and appraisal services.

Despite her business losing money every year since at least 2009, Weidenhamer persuaded multiple banks to lend her money by submitting fabricated financial statements between 2008 and 2013.

[RELATED: Abrupt closure of Phoenix auction house puzzles customers]

Her total line of credit increased from $10 million in 2008 to $55 million in 2015.

Auditors discovered the fraud early last year and lenders declared the loan in default.

During a routine audit in early 2016, the lenders discovered Weidenhamer's fraudulent conduct and declared the loan in default.

At the time, the outstanding balance of her loan was over $52.4 million.

After her default, Weidenhamer voluntarily cooperated with the lenders, the FBI, and U.S. Attorney's Office and provided a full confession.  

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

© 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


  • Featured VideoMore>>

  • Triano gets win in interim coaching debut for Phoenix

    Triano gets win in interim coaching debut for Phoenix

    Tuesday, October 24 2017 1:32 AM EDT2017-10-24 05:32:25 GMT
    Phoenix Suns head coach Jay Triano speaks with Phoenix Suns guard Troy Daniels (30) during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Sacramento Kings, Monday, Oct. 23, 2017, in Phoenix. (Source: AP Photo/Matt York)Phoenix Suns head coach Jay Triano speaks with Phoenix Suns guard Troy Daniels (30) during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Sacramento Kings, Monday, Oct. 23, 2017, in Phoenix. (Source: AP Photo/Matt York)

    The Phoenix Suns beat the Sacramento Kings 117-115 on Monday for their first win of the season in their first game under interim coach Jay Triano.

    More >

    The Phoenix Suns beat the Sacramento Kings 117-115 on Monday for their first win of the season in their first game under interim coach Jay Triano.

    More >
  • Education board votes to review new grading system

    Education board votes to review new grading system

    Tuesday, October 24 2017 1:25 AM EDT2017-10-24 05:25:37 GMT
    The Arizona Board of Education decided to delay issuing final grades to schools in state. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)The Arizona Board of Education decided to delay issuing final grades to schools in state. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

    As soon as the grades were released earlier this month, the new system was bombarded with criticism that the data used was inaccurate. 

    More >

    As soon as the grades were released earlier this month, the new system was bombarded with criticism that the data used was inaccurate. 

    More >
  • 3 On Your Side

    Comparing Halloween candy prices

    Comparing Halloween candy prices

    Tuesday, October 24 2017 12:53 AM EDT2017-10-24 04:53:15 GMT
    3 On Your Side compared different candy bags to see which had the best bang for the buck. (Source: 3TV)3 On Your Side compared different candy bags to see which had the best bang for the buck. (Source: 3TV)

    How much will you spend on Halloween this year? For the answer, we sent our 3 On Your Side crew out to do a little comparison shopping and have a little fun.

    More >

    How much will you spend on Halloween this year? For the answer, we sent our 3 On Your Side crew out to do a little comparison shopping and have a little fun.

    More >