Tim Montgomery pleads guilty

Former Olympic sprinter could get four years in prison

? Olympic sprinter Tim Montgomery, once considered the fastest man on Earth until his world record was erased in the BALCO steroid scandal, pleaded guilty Monday to conspiracy in a multimillion-dollar bank fraud and money-laundering scheme.

“I sincerely regret the role I played in this unfortunate episode,” Montgomery said in a statement following the plea. “I have disappointed many people, and for that I am truly sorry.”

Montgomery’s plea deal “reflects his minor role” in an alleged conspiracy and does not require him to testify at the trial of his former coach, Steven Riddick, and other co-defendants, according to his lawyers. That trial is scheduled to begin today.

Defense attorneys said Montgomery could be sentenced to 37 to 46 months in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 1. The U.S. attorney’s office had no immediate comment.

Montgomery, 32, was charged last year along with Riddick, and 11 others in an alleged conspiracy to deposit $5 million in stolen, altered or counterfeit checks at several banks.