Even in a slowly-recovering recession it seems that there ample numbers of people with millions to invest on highly risky ventures. That appears to be part of the scenario surrounding the arrest of a 66-year-old North Carolina man on securities fraud charges. Federal authorities obtained an indictment against the man for running what they characterized as a Ponzi scheme.
They accuse the man, who resides in Graham, of bilking 500 investors of a total of $4.7 million from 2010 through the end of March 2013. They say he ran a Ponzi scheme by inducing victims to put money in his investment companies for the purpose of investing in what is known as the foreign currency market (‘Forex’). However, he reportedly put very little of the money into those markets.
Instead, he is accused of engaging in what appears to be embezzlement of the funds by drawing it out of various bank accounts for personal, business and other purposes. He also used part of the money to make Ponzi payments to some of the investors, according to authorities. Of the little portion that he did put into Forex, he lost it all. He had misrepresented to his clients that he had over 35 years’ experience in futures and options trading, but the authorities say that he had none.
In addition to the securities fraud, the indictment implicates him in potential internet or computer crimes by his creating a website for his clients in which he gave them false account information. The arrest was billed in a special news conference as a joint effort of federal, state and local authorities. A North Carolina resident accused of federal fraud crimes will find it necessary to consult with qualified professional counsel as soon as possible to determine whether there are any viable defenses to the charges. If there aren’t, then the earliest possible plea negotiations are recommended in order to obtain beneficial sentencing offers.
Source: wbtv.com, “NC investment firm owner charged in multi-million Ponzi scheme,” April 30, 2013