FORT WASHINGTON, Pa. (CBS) — A Montgomery County jury has convicted a former pastor of a felony bad check charge for trying to buy a brand new Mercedes Benz from a local dealership nearly two years ago.

The defense argued that Michael Wilkerson had made a mistake, that he never meant to intentionally write a bad $111,000 check to the Fort Washington dealership. But the jury didn’t buy it and after five hours of deliberations, convicted the 45-year-old Pottstown man of writing a bad check which carries a maximum of seven years behind bars.

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Prosecutor Jeremy Lupo argued that Wilkerson knew the check was written on an account that was closed eight months before.

“This isn’t someone who simply didn’t have the money to cover a check and asked for forgiveness or tried to work with the dealership to repay the money. This is someone who deliberately attempted to trick someone into giving them a car for a bad check,” said Lupo.

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The car was eventually returned, but Lupo says the dealership lost more than $10,000.

Wilkerson is no stranger to law enforcement. He served time in connection with a fraudulent financial scheme related to a nearly $2 million dollar home he was building in Berks County.

Reported by Brad Segall, KYW Newsradio

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