A New Jersey grand jury indicted former NFL wide receiver Irving Fryar and his mother Allene McGhee Wednesday, alleging they planned to steal nearly $700,000 with McGhee attempting to get five home equity loans fraudulently.
Fryar, 51, who played for four NFL teams over his 17-year pro career, faces prison time for the second-degree felony charges. He was coaching high school football in Robbinsville, N.J. and was pastor of a church he founded in Mount Holly, N.J., according to The Trentonian.
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The indictment alleges that between Dec. 16-21, 2009, Fryar and his mother tried to get five home equity loans totaling more than $690,000 using McGhee's home in Willingboro as collateral.
The indictment claims that the two tried to deceive five banks by applying for and closing on the loans in a short period, leaving the banks to believe it had the first lien on the property.
Fryar and McGhee have been charged with second-degree conspiracy and theft by deception. Each charge carries a sentence of five to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $150,000 upon conviction, according to the Star-Ledger.
Fryar and McGhee will be ordered to appear for arraignment at a later date.
"This is not a case in which Mr. Fryar and his mother simply omitted or misstated information on loan applications," New Jersey acting attorney general John Hoffman said in a written statement, according to The Trentonian. "This indictment alleges that they engaged in an elaborate criminal scheme that was designed to defraud these banks of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
"It is disappointing that someone with an illustrious career in professional sports who now is a minister and coach in the community is charged with this crime, but he must face justice like anyone else."
After a stellar collegiate career at Nebraska, Fryar played in the NFL from 1984 to 2000, making the Pro Bowl five times. He played nine seasons with the New England Patriots before he moved on to play three each with the Miami Dolphins and Philadelphia Eagles. He finished his career with the Washington Redskins.
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