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Driver-Broker Convicted of Fraud

July 13, 2000

NEW YORK (AP) _ A Florida truck driver whose employer promoted him to stock broker was convicted Wednesday of fraud related to the sale of securities in a proposed indoor golf range.

Duane Taylor, 35, of Naples, Fla., was found guilty of scheming to defraud and violating the state’s business law. He faces four years in prison when State Supreme Court Justice Laura Drager sentences him Sept. 18.

Taylor was acquitted of larceny. He remains free on $50,000 bail pending sentencing.

Taylor was one of 33 people indicted along with their employer, A.S. Goldmen & Co., of committing stock fraud against thousands of investors, cheating them out of some $100 million.

A 1998 indictment alleged Taylor, a Goldmen employee, sold stock in Millennium Sports Management Inc. to an undercover investigator by lying about the company’s profits, stability and other characteristics.

Originally hired by Goldmen as a truck driver, Taylor was later made a stock broker by the firm’s principal owner, prosecutors said.

Millennium was a Nasdaq Stock Market-listed company that operated a minor league baseball stadium in New Jersey and helped create Stadium Capital Inc., a venture formed to fund the design and development of a ``stadium golf″ resort in Naples.

While pushing Millennium’s stock, the indictment alleged, Taylor lied or hid important facts about the project and he lied about famous individuals and companies participating in it.

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