$20 Million Ponzi Scheme - I
October 23, 2009
Hundreds of investors lost millions of dollars in a scam. Special Agent Sabrina Lawrence of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office worked the case in which a lot of investment contracts were studied and analyzed.
Mr. Schiff: Hundreds of investors lost millions of dollars in a scam. Special Agent Sabrina Lawrence of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office worked the case in which a lot of investment contracts were studied and analyzed.
Ms. Lawrence: "We look into bank and financial records, into vehicle documentation, receipts for items purchased.”
Mr. Schiff: Lawrence says it was a Ponzi scheme. Investors were promised big returns and that just didn’t happen.
Ms. Lawrence: "They use some of that money to give back to some of the investors in order to give it the semblance of legitimacy or the air of believability.”
Mr. Schiff: Lawrence says the stock futures was the game but the money was lost in space forever.
Ms. Lawrence: "The investments were misrepresented as being very successful and profitable when in reality, the vast majority of the investors’ money was diverted for personal use of the subjects.”
Mr. Schiff: Total take: $20 million. A subject was sentenced to over eight years in prison. The FBI worked with the IRS, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and the Tulare County officials. I’m Neal Schiff of the Bureau, and that’s the FBI’s Closed Case of the Week.”
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