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The Region

Former commodities dealer Bernard Striar, who for two decades eluded a federal manhunt by assuming at least five identities, pleaded guilty to four fraud charges and admitted that his La Mesa investment firm was nothing more than a scheme to defraud 800 clients out of more than $16 million. Striar, 60, pleaded guilty in federal court in San Diego to two counts of mail fraud and two counts of fraud by a commodity pool operator. Each count carries a maximum prison term of five years and fines ranging from $1,000 to $100,000. Striar, who has been held without bail since his arrest in January, will be sentenced Sept. 7.


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