Former N.J. lawmaker owns up to $1.9 million theft

A former New Jersey lawmaker has pleaded guilty to stealing nearly $1.9 million from people who loaned him money for a business venture and writing more than $3.4 million in bad checks to other creditors.

Former Republican Assemblyman Robert Schroeder pleaded guilty Friday to a charge of second-degree misconduct by a corporate official.

The state will recommend that he be sentenced to eight years in state prison. He will be required to pay back the more than $5.3 million he stole from his victims and be barred from public employment.

Schroeder convinced creditors to give him money for a project that he said would supply housing at a North Dakota oil drilling project, prosecutors said. He instead used the money for personal expenses and other debts.

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