Ex-California lawmaker pleads guilty in coffee shops fraud

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A former state assemblyman from San Bernardino pleaded guilty to money laundering after acknowledging he defrauded investors as CEO of a coffee shop chain in the San Francisco Bay Area, federal prosecutors said Thursday.

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As part of a plea agreement, Terrence Goggin, 78, pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering and agreed to pay restitution of at least $685,000, U.S. Attorney David Anderson said.

A federal grand jury had charged him with four counts of wire fraud and nine counts of money laundering in a fraud scheme from 2007 to 2014 as Goggin's company, Metropolitan Coffee & Concessions, sought funding to build two Peet’s Coffee & Tea shops in high-traffic Bay Area Rapid Transit stations.

Goggin acknowledged that in September 2013 he and his employees diverted nearly all of the $685,000 in investment funds to other businesses, including Aegis Atlantic LLC, a Delaware company he headed as CEO, prosecutors said.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported that Goggin, a friend of then-Assembly Speaker Willie Brown, came to San Francisco to practice law after Brown was elected mayor in 1996.

Goggin remains free on bond pending a sentencing hearing scheduled for April. He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, plus restitution.

A Democrat, Goggin served in the state Assembly from 1974 to 1984 and oversaw the Assembly Natural Resources Committee in the early 1980s.

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This story has been updated to reflect that Goggin left the Assembly in 1984, not 1985.