Former auto dealer pleads guilty to one count of fraud

By on Friday, March 17th, 2023 in Columbia Basin News Featured Stories

SPOKANE – The U.S. District Court in Spokane reports former auto dealer Mark W. Gilbert pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of fraud in connection with an identification document or authentication feature. The document was associated with Gilbert purchasing a home in Hawaii back in 2014.

The case endured several delays.

In November, the judge refused to honor an earlier plea agreement, so Gilbert requested the guilty plea he entered withdrawn and the case against him be returned to trial track and that proceedings continue.

In April, when Gilbert originally pleaded guilty to the charge of fraud, federal prosecutors dismissed all other charges including bank fraud, aggravated identity theft and making a false declaration in relation to a bankruptcy case as part of the plea agreement.

Gilbert is the former owner of a chain of auto dealerships in College Place, Moses Lake and Walla Walla, Washington; Milton-Freewater and Pendleton, Oregon; and Moscow, Idaho.

His sentencing hearing is scheduled for June 15.

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