BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A man whose investment schemes cost family members and scores of other people $500,000 was convicted by a federal court jury on eight counts of mail fraud.

The Advocate reports that Evers F. Harris, 40, and his wife leased a $535,000 home in Las Vegas and spent investor funds on two Jaguar automobiles, diamond jewelry, expensive clothes and trips to casinos and spas, Harris conceded at trial.

Harris told jurors he felt pressure to spend money on "role playing" in an effort to sell secret inventions he hoped would earn money for his investors.

U.S. District Judge James J. Brady did not immediately schedule a sentencing hearing for Harris, who remains free on bail.