Founder of Round House Company pleads guilty to fraud in Lee Co.
OPELIKA, Ala. (WTVM) - Kyle Sandler, the man charged for his role in a scheme that swindled over $1.9 million dollars out of more than 50 investors, appeared in court Tuesday, physically trembling.
“I plead guilty, your honor,” Sandler said.
Sandler has already pleaded guilty to fraud in federal court, facing a sentence of over five years in a federal prison. Tuesday, he pleaded guilty to a first-degree theft charge for a $2,500 bad check he wrote.
The City of Opelika was initially excited to have Sandler and his upstart business.
“He wanted to do this incubator and use that gig of internet service and of course, naturally, we loved it because we were just getting started,” said Opelika Mayor Gary Fuller.
Sandler portrayed himself as a wealthy former Google executive opening up a business that helped develop and start up companies in downtown Opelika.
But it turned out too good to be true.
“He was a shyster, and a flim-flam artist and he talked some pretty smart people out of some money,” Fuller said.
According to court records, he was using investors’ money for personal expenses like rent and childcare.
Without warning, Sandler suddenly closed the Round House, his business, and investors nationally and locally were out large amounts of money.
“He knew exactly what he was doing, I believe, when he targeted Opelika," said Lee County District Attorney Brandon Hughes."He knew the people he was targeting.”
Sandler’s state sentence is 12 months in jail and 5 years probation. He has just about 20 days left in his jail time for this. He will then be sent to a federal prison to serve around 5 years for his federal sentence.
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