A Cedar Rapids landlord was sentenced to 20 years in prison Monday. U.S. District Court Judge Mark Bennett handed down the maximum sentence for 55-year-old Robert Miell calling him a “poster child for every landlord that takes advantage of damage deposits.”
Miell pleaded guilty to 18 counts of mail fraud and two counts of perjury, and in January 2009 he was convicted by a jury of two counts of tax fraud. The charges stem from his fraudulent reports to American Family Insurance of more than $336,000 in storm damage at 145 properties.
Assistant U.S. Attorney C.J. Williams says the sentencing followed two years of court hearings. “It was a very complex fraud,” Williams told KCRG-TV. “It took an amazing amount of work by the agents in this case. We had agents from the IRS, Postal Service and the Iowa Insurance Fraud Bureau.”
Judge Bennett also ordered Miell to pay a $250,000 fine and pay restitution to 140 former tenants. Bennett has 60 days to rule on the restitution amount.
By Dave Franzman, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids