Online court records say 53-year-old Thomas Merchant, of Cheyenne, Wyo., was found guilty Tuesday by a Lancaster County District Court jury. The charge: Unlawful sale or purchase of a vehicle. Investigators say he posed as a dealer in June 2011 to buy 19 vehicles.
In March the state’s highest court said testimony by the director of Nebraska’s Motor Vehicle Industry Licensing Board effectively “instructed the jury on how to make its decision of Merchant’s guilt.” The high court said that power is restricted to the trial court judge.
Merchant, who was given 12 to 30 years in prison after his conviction last year, is scheduled to be sentenced again on Sept. 25.