Bachar, 57, faces 2-6 years in prison and $183,000 in restitution. Sentencing is Nov. 6.
The plea, which is likely to result in prison time, would cancel a Sept. 26 trial.
Thursday’s order ends a four-month-long debate over who would get the $174,000 intended to be restitution.
“The pretrial publicity says he has pleaded guilty. That is inherently prejudicial,” Bachar’s attorney argued.
Bachar has been spending time in the ski town and falsely told people around town that he was a volunteer firefighter in order to acquire the smallest of small-town perks.
After his restitution-for-probation deal collapsed, others came for Bachar’s $174,370. Three judges will decide who gets it.
“Many in our community steal much less and go to prison,” Judge Eric Johnson said. The case will instead move ahead to trial.
The admitted thief faces up to a dozen years in prison for taking $125,000 of a longtime friend’s money.
A judge has told the admitted thief to repay a retired energy consultant who loaned him money more than a decade ago.
The 57-year-old disbarred lawyer will get probation instead of prison time if he pays $175,000 in restitution in January.