A federal judge this morning sentenced Michael Sheneman to eight years in prison for running a local mortgage fraud scheme that spanned four years and involved at least 60 properties in South Bend.

Sheneman, 59, who had not yet spoken publicly about the charges, broke his silence at the hearing. He spoke for nearly an hour maintaining his innocence, at times taking a defensive tone. “I sincerely did not try to take advantage of people,” Sheneman said, his eyes focused on U.S. District Judge Jon DeGuilio.

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