$20 Million Ponzi Scheme - II


October 30, 2009

It’s a case of a very large investment scheme that was bad for investors and ultimately bad for the scammers.


Audio Transcript

Mr. Schiff: It’s a case of a very large investment scheme that was bad for investors and ultimately bad for the scammers.

Ms. Lawrence: "There were approximately 130 investors or victims that gave money.”

Mr. Schiff: FBI Special Agent Sabrina Lawrence of the Los Angeles office.

Ms. Lawrence: "Approximately $20 million was obtained from those victims.”

Mr. Schiff: Lawrence says the scheme leader got the money in various ways.

Ms. Lawrence: "Through money orders, through checks, as well as through wires. And at that point a lot of the money was then diverted from the supposed business account into other personal accounts.”

Mr. Schiff: Lawrence says the bad guys sort of lived like kings and squandered the money.

Ms. Lawrence: "Approximately $3.5 million was given to friends, family, and other associates. Over $3 million was used to purchase various vehicles, many of them high-end vehicles like Porches, Mercedes-Benz, Landrovers, RVs.”

Mr. Schiff: It’s 97 months in prison for the group’s leader with payback in the millions. He pleaded guilty to wire fraud and money laundering. I’m Neal Schiff of the Bureau, and that’s the FBI’s Closed Case of the Week.”

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