A Lake Havasu City man accused of 20 assorted felony counts of theft and fraud now faces a new challenge with a civil lawsuit filed earlier this month.
The complaint alleges that former Lake Havasu City business owner Steven P. LeProhon, 31, failed to repay a $13,490 loan from plaintiff Robert Rodriguez. According to prosecutors, however, welching on a debt may be the least of LeProhon’s concerns. He is now scheduled to appear in Mohave Superior Court on Dec. 10 as he awaits trial in a case of more than 20 felony counts including fraud and theft in an alleged Ponzi scheme.
LeProhon was initially charged last May with 13 felony counts after he allegedly accepted tens of thousands of dollars in payment from victims through his boating business, Steven LeProhon Marine and Motorsports. According to police and prosecutors, the victims ultimately paid LeProhon for services that were never rendered. Earlier this year, he was charged with 16 additional counts of fraud and theft as more criminal complaints emerged in the case.
According to the Lake Havasu City Police Department, detectives received six felony complaints against LeProhon beginning in 2017. LeProhon was paid to repair or otherwise maintain watercraft belonging to Havasu visitors and residents. But according to multiple complaints, LeProhon removed parts from watercraft for sale without the owners’ permission, or installed parts on customers’ boats that may have been stolen or removed from other watercraft.
Police say LeProhon may have sold another customer’s off-highway vehicle without its owner’s permission to a California buyer.
In another complaint, LeProhon allegedly worked on a single customer’s boat repeatedly over a span of three years. The boat’s engine broke down repeatedly during that timeframe, the complaint said, at one point leaving the victim and his family stranded. The victim said LeProhon received $10,000 up front to repair the engine, only to later sell that engine for parts. According to the report, LeProhon never returned the victim’s money or replaced the victim’s engine. He reportedly told the victim to “take him to court.”
According to police, LeProhon allegedly used money and equipment from previous victims to service newer clients in the apparent Ponzi scheme.
LeProhon recently appeared in Mohave Superior Court for a settlement conference, during which he and his attorney were given opportunity to consider the terms of a possible plea agreement in the case. LeProhon has not accepted such an agreement as of Tuesday.