South Florida dealer due in court on fraud charges

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A South Florida boat dealer who was arrested last year and charged with fraud is scheduled to turn himself in today, according to Broward County officials.

Edward Spano, 73, was charged last year with defrauding customers by selling boats that had outstanding loans.

According to the Broward County Clerk of the Courts website, Spano is due in court at 1:30 p.m. No information about sentencing was available on the site.

Detectives said Spano, the owner of Legacy Fisherman Inc., failed to pay off the loans, leaving 45 customers with a total loss of about $1.3 million, according to the Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) Sun Sentinel.

After he sold a boat, Spano would issue temporary tags and tell customers he would handle any paperwork the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles required so customers didn't discover the lien, officials told the newspaper.

Spano also made small payments in an attempt to keep the loans current and avoid triggering collections or other action that would alert customers to the loans, officials said.

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