Man, 72, Pleads Guilty To Lonely Hearts Scam

A 72-year-old man pleaded guilty Tuesday to swindling a half-dozen elderly women out of nearly $1.4 million by putting ads in the lonely hearts page of a local newspaper.

Norman Williams pleaded guilty to four counts of grand theft and will receive a seven-year prison term when he is sentenced January 30.

Williams entered the plea in municipal court in exchange for having three additional grand theft charges and a felony firearm possession charge dropped.

Williams dated his victims - ages 69 and older - and asked them for loans, usually telling them he was a contractor who needed money to complete a job in Mexico, Idaho or San Diego, officials said.

When the women started demanding repayment, he stopped returning calls, court records show.

Williams gambled most of the money in Las Vegas, authorities said.

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