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Local developer Robert Morgan enters plea in fraud case

A skyline view of Rochester
Max Schulte
/
WXXI News
Downtown Rochester skyline view.

A well-known Rochester area developer pleaded guilty to a charge in federal court on Tuesday in a case that has been going on for years.

Robert Morgan pleaded guilty in federal court in Rochester to a charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

The prosecutors in the case say it refers to a company, Morgan Ellison Heights LLC, which was the majority owner of Ellison Heights Apartments in Penfield.

In 2016, officials say that Morgan, along with one or more co-conspirators, caused ESL Federal Credit Union to issue a construction loan based on inaccurate information.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office says that information was submitted to ESL to obtain a larger amount of the construction loan than what would otherwise have been supported by the actual figures.

Morgan will be sentenced in July, and although the charge he pleaded guilty to carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, the plea agreement calls for no jail time.

But ultimately, federal judge Elizabeth Wolford can either accept or reject the terms of the plea deal.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.