Nebraska Man Convicted of Paying to Have Plant Burned Down

A Nebraska man has been convicted of hiring someone to set his struggling manufacturing business on fire in an effort to obtain $4 million in insurance money.

A federal jury on Tuesday found 52-year-old Thomas Schropp guilty of arson, mail and wire fraud. He faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years for the arson conviction and up to 20 years for the mail and wire fraud convictions.

Prosecutors say Schropp’s business, PK Manufacturing in Nashville, Neb., was purposefully set on fire in November 2008 after he had asked an associate to burn it down for $20,000. They say Schropp filed an insurance claim for $4 million, which the insurance company denied.

Schropp’s attorney Alan Stoler tells the Omaha World-Herald he plans to appeal the jury’s verdict.