COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - State parole officials have rejected a request for early release from prison for former HomeGold executive Ronnie Sheppard.
A three-member panel of the parole board voted unanimously Wednesday against releasing Sheppard, whose lawyers argued that he needs outside medical care because of a recent heart surgery.
Sheppard is serving a 20-year sentence for securities fraud, conspiracy and obtaining property under false pretenses for his role in the 2003 collapse of HomeGold and its subsidiary Carolina Investors. More than 8,000 investors lost $275 million in one of the biggest bankruptcies in state history. Several of those investors testified Wednesday against early release.
Several previous requests for early release have been turned down. Sheppard is eligible to ask again next year. He is scheduled to be released in 2016.