Danbury Man Convicted of Defrauding Investors
Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that a federal jury in New Haven today found IAN PARKER BICK, 20, of Danbury, guilty of fraud and money laundering offenses stemming from his operation of Ponzi scheme. The trial before U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Alker Meyer began on November 6.
“Mr. Bick repeatedly lied to victim investors, took their money and used it to take trips with friends, on shopping sprees, to purchase jet skis, and also to pay off previous investors who were promised unrealistic returns,” U.S. Attorney Daly said. “I thank the FBI, IRS Criminal Investigation, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Connecticut Department of Banking and Danbury Police Department for their diligent investigation and prosecution of this matter.”
According to the evidence at trial, BICK was a principal and/or managing member of various Danbury-based entities, including This Is Where It’s At Entertainment, LLC, Planet Youth Entertainment, W&B Wholesale, LLC, and W&B Investments, LLC. Using these entities, BICK solicited investment funds from his friends, former classmates, acquaintances, and their parents by promising high investment returns over relatively short periods of time. BICK falsely represented to victim-investors that he could generate the high investment returns by using their funds to purchase electronics and electronic devices, such as iPhones, tablets and head phones, and by reselling the items for a substantial profit via the Internet. However, the electronic resale business never actually began in earnest and did not return any meaningful profit. BICK also falsely represented to certain victim-investors that he could generate high investment returns by using their funds to organize and promote concerts at various venues in Connecticut and Rhode Island. BICK falsely represented that he had made significant profits organizing and promoting concerts in the past.
BICK failed to invest the funds he received as he had represented and instead used invested funds for unrelated and unsuccessful businesses, and to pay personal expenses, including hotel stays and to purchase jet skis. BICK also used invested funds to issue payments, purportedly as “interest payments” and as “return of principal,” to certain victim-investors.
Through this scheme, BICK defrauded more than 15 investors out of a total of nearly $500,000.
BICK was charged in a 15-count indictment on January 8, 2015. The jury found BICK guilty on six counts of wire fraud, which carry a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years on each count, and one count of money laundering, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years.
The jury found BICK not guilty on two counts of wire fraud and one count of making a false statement to federal law enforcement, and could not reach a verdict on three counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering. The government dismissed one count of money laundering prior to the trial.
Judge Meyer scheduled sentencing for March 2, 2016. BICK is released on a $250,000 bond.
This matter has been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division and U.S. Postal Inspection Service, with the assistance of the Connecticut Department of Banking and the Danbury Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael S. McGarry and Christopher W. Schmeisser.
Citizens are encouraged to report any financial fraud schemes by calling, toll free, 855-236-9740, or by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.