Tavern owner sentenced for burning his business to collect insurance money

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A tavern owner has been sentenced for burning his business in Sawyer County to collect insurance money.

The U.S. Attorney's Office says a Federal Jury sentenced 39-year-old Philip Lathrop to seven years in prison for arson and mail fraud. Prosecutors say Lathrop owned Player's Sports Bar & Grill in Hayward. It burned down on August 16, 2003. That's a day before his insurance on the place expired. His premiums were set to increase.

He collected $253,000 for his losses. Investigators say Lathrop hired Dave Maki to burn the bar down for $5,000 and some cocaine.

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