A woman who federal prosecutors have described as a serial bankruptcy filer has been convicted in Shreveport Federal Court of lying during bankruptcy proceedings.  

A Shreveport Federal Court jury deliberated barely 30 minutes before convicting 49-year-old Shelley R. Callahan of Clinton, MO, of making a false statement during a bankruptcy proceeding.  She's to be sentenced May 22nd and could face up to 5 years in federal prison, 3 years of supervised release, and/or a fine of up to $250,000.

Federal prosecutors say that when Callahan filed for bankruptcy protection on August 26, 2010, it was her eighth bankruptcy filing in nine years.  They say that, prior to her latest filing, Callahan had falsely stated that she had not made any gifts or payments to family members.  In reality, they say that Callahan had received more than $55,000 for a personal injury claim eight months before her latest bankruptcy filing.  Then, instead of paying her creditors, they say she provided gifts during the Christmas season and gambling trips to casinos to her family.

Callahan's trial began Monday in Shreveport Federal Court but was postponed Tuesday and Wednesday because of the weather.  It resumed Thursday morning and concluded Friday afternoon.