La. man gets prison term for bank fraud

SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) - A central Louisiana businessman has been sentenced to six years in prison for defrauding banks and private investors out of nearly $4 million.

U.S. District Judge Donald Walter in Shreveport also on Thursday ordered 56-year-old William Everett Nichols, of Alexandria, to pay about $3.9 million in restitution. Nichols pleaded guilty to bank fraud in November.

Nichols, president of First Fidelity Mortgage Inc., ran a company that provided mortgages to customers in central Louisiana. At least two Louisiana banks provided credit to Nichols' company for the mortgages.

Federal prosecutors say Nichols forged borrowers' signatures and provided the forged notes as collateral.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.