Coin Fraud Scheme Nets New Yorker 27 Months in Federal Prison
United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger today announced the sentencing of CHRYSANTHOS NICHOLAS, 55, to 27 months in prison for orchestrating a $250,000 coin fraud scheme. The defendant, who was charged on July 22, 2014, pleaded guilty to one count of Mail Fraud on August 20, 2014. NICHOLAS was sentenced yesterday before Chief Judge Michael J. Davis in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, Minn.
According to his guilty plea and documents filed in court, in 2010, NICHOLAS owned and operated two coin businesses, TWC Trading (“TWC”) and North Fork Six Rare Coin Consultants (“North Fork”), located in New York State. Both businesses evaluated, stored, bought, sold and traded coins and precious metals. Through TWC and North Fork, NICHOLAS contacted individuals about coins and precious metals. He entered into contracts with these individuals to evaluate, store, and sell their coins. During the course of the scheme, NICHOLAS gained the trust of his client victims, many of whom were elderly and handed over to the defendant their life savings.
According to his guilty plea and documents filed in court, NICHOLAS did not pay his clients for the coins or return the coins to the clients upon their request, and refused to answer or return phone calls to clients. For example, in February 2010, the defendant entered into a contract with a client located in Merrifield, Minnesota, to evaluate, store and sell the client’s coins. On or about February 26, 2010, at the defendant’s direction, the client mailed his coins through the United States Postal Service to the defendant in Southold, New York. The defendant received the client’s coins, valued at $135,450.40, but did not pay for the coins and did not return the coins. The client attempted to contact the defendant about his coins; however, the defendant stopped answering or returning the client’s calls.
Throughout the scheme, NICHOLAS stole $267,473.40 in coins and precious metals.
The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Karen B. Schommer.
- CHRYSANTHOS NICHOLAS, 55
- Mattituck, NY
- Mail Fraud, 1 count
- 27 months in prison
- three years’ supervised release
- $248,284.40 restitution