(Bloomberg) -- A rancher who got Tyson Foods Inc. to pay him $233 million to raise nonexistent cattle was ordered to spend 11 years in a federal prison.

Cody Allen Easterday of Mesa, Washington, was sentenced on Tuesday. He pleaded guilty last year to running a fraudulent scheme from 2016 to 2020 in which he submitted false invoices to Tyson and another unnamed company for costs relating to 265,000 head of “ghost cattle.” The other company paid him $11 million.

“Mr. Easterday amassed significant personal wealth, yet he wanted more, so he defrauded his victims of nearly a quarter billion dollars by charging for cattle that never existed,” said Vanessa Waldref, the top federal prosecutor in Spokane, Washington.

The case is one of the largest fraud schemes ever prosecuted in eastern Washington, Waldref said.

Easterday, 51, used the $244 million for personal and company expenses, as well as to cover about $200 million in commodities trading losses. He was also charged with defrauding CME Group Inc., which operates the world’s largest futures market, by submitting false paperwork that got his company, Easterday Ranches Inc., exempted from position limits on live cattle contracts.

His contract with Tyson and the other company called for him to repay them with interest once the cattle were slaughtered and sold at market, retaining the difference as profit.

As part of his guilty plea, Easterday agreed to pay $244 million in restitution.

The case is US v. Easterday, 21-cr-6012, US District Court, Eastern District of Washington.

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