Samuel Bowron Phillips, 41, of Fort Smith has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for a scheme in which he took $1.6 million from customers of his insurance business.

U.S. Attorney Kenneth Elser announced the sentence, given on charges of mail fraud, wire fraud and money laundering. He’s been ordered to pay restitution and serve three years of supervised release after the prison term.


An investigation began after customers told the Arkansas Insurance Department they’d learned annuities they’d been sold by Phillips were non-existent. He took 21 annuity and insurance policy customers’ money for his own use by putting the money into sham companies. He pleaded guilty last June.