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Tag: Ponzi Scheme

FBI Informant Who Helped FBI in Unprecedented Sting Sentenced to Six Years in Prison

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Solomon Dwek, the informant behind the largest FBI sting operation in New Jersey history, was sentenced Thursday to six years in prison in an unrelated scheme, the Star-Ledger reports.

Dwek was facing up to 11 years but received a sentence reduction in exchange for helping in “one of the most far-reaching, and at times bizarre, undercover stings ever seen,” the Star-Ledger reported.

Using hidden surveillance, Dwek helped target politicians, rabbis and even a black market kidney broker.

Dwek was accused of running a $400 million real estate Ponzi scheme.

Feds Suspect Ex-University of Georgia Coach of Ponzi Scheme

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 Former University of Georgia football coach Jim Donnan faces financial penalties and potential criminal charges in connection with a business venture, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

“He capitalized on his influence over one former player by telling him, ‘Your Daddy is going to take care of you’ … ‘if you weren’t my son, I wouldn’t be doing this for you,’” the Securities and Exchange Commission said in a civil complaint filed Thursday, according to the Journal Constitution.

The SEC says Donnan, 67, turned his venture, a liquidation business called GLC Limited, into a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors, according to authorities.

Donnan, who is in the College Football Hall of Fame, coached the Bulldogs from 1996 to 2000.

STORIES OF OTHER INTEREST


Ponzi Schemer Keith Simmons Sentenced to 50 Years Plus Restitution

Shoshanna Utchenik
ticklethewire.com

Keith Franklin Simmons, 47, of North Carolina, was sentenced Wednesday to 50 years in prison for an elaborate Ponzi scheme that devastated hundreds of investors, mostly elderly and vulnerable, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced.

A disgusted U.S. District Judge Robert Conrad Jr. and agents involved in his case described Simmons as a callous swindling predator, who wreaked devastation leading victims to anxiety, despondency, and in one case according to the Winston Salem Journal, denouncing god and considering suicide.

Simmons and his co-conspirators began soliciting victims to invest in Black Diamond Capital Solutions in April 2007. Over 400 victims invested more than $40 million from 2007 to 2009, when the bogus claims of wild profits started to unravel and Simmons was arrested by the FBI. Rather than trading in the foreign currency exchange market, as promised, Simmons was funding his own extravagant life style with the investments.

Judge Conrad also sentenced Simmons to pay $35,331,632 in restitution, which will come from selling off that stolen lifestyle one property at a time.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office announced it will additonally “request liquidation of forfeited assets and return of net proceeds of liquidation to victims.”

Hopefully these reparations will happen quickly, as almost 100 of those who lost everything are over 75 years old and have no time to lose.

To read more click here.

Bernie Madoff Won’t Attend Son’s Funeral

Mark Madoff/facebook photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Convicted swindler Bernie Madoff won’t be attending the funeral of his son Mark, who committed suicide in his  Manhattan home over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“Mr. Madoff will not be attending the funeral out of consideration” for his family, attorney Ira Sorkin told the Journal.  Madoff will have his own private ceremony at his North Carolina prison.

Details of the funeral were still unclear and Mark Madoff’s  body remained in the New York City morgue on Monday, the Journal reported. In the Jewish faith, a body is buried as quickly as possible.

NBC’s Today Show reported that the son had not talked to the parents in a long time and that Ruth Madoff, Bernie’s wife, was angry at her husband over the suicide, saying he had blood on his hands.

Mark Madoff and his brother denied ever knowing that their father ran a sham operation, though some are skeptical of those claims.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Feds Sell Off $67.8 Million in Madoff’s Belongings So Far

Bernie Madoff/facebook photo

Bernie Madoff/facebook photo

By Allan Lengel
For AOL News

While 72-year-old swindler Bernie Madoff serves a 150-year sentence behind bars, federal authorities are working to use his ill-gotten gains to repay his many victims.

On Wednesday, in the latest court filing in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said the government so far has recouped about $67.8 million through the sale of his belongings, though the figure obviously falls far short of the $50 billion or so Madoff swindled from investors.

The government tally so far, according to court documents, includes $7.3 million from the sale of his New York City co-op; about $59 million from the sale of his four-bedroom, 1.2-acre home in Montauk, N.Y.; $1.4 million for his Cap d’Antibes apartment in the French Riviera; and cars, boats, a securities account and personal property.

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Hundreds of FBI, DEA, ICE Agents Stung in Ponzi Scheme

thiefBy Allan Lengel
For AOL News

WASHINGTON — FBI agents are supposed to unearth scams, not become victims of them. This time is different.

Up to 300 or so retired and current federal agents from the FBI and Drug Enforcement Administration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), invested collectively tens of millions of dollars of retirement money in what has turned out to be a Ponzi scheme run by a Florida man who just committed suicide. The FBI and the Security Exchange Commission are investigating and trying recover funds.

“There’s definitely ones who have lost their life savings,” Ft. Lauderdale Attorney Michael Goldberg, who is representing victims, told AOL News.

The reaction of the agents? “Pretty much what you expect,” he said. “Shock and anger.”

Behind it all is a suspected con artist, a self-described retirement investment adviser Kenneth Wayne McLeod, 48, who for years became a trusted adviser to federal agents around the country, offering free financial projections for retirement and offering, in some cases, high-yield returns of 8 to 10 percent on certain investments, according to an SEC filing in the case.

To read full story click here.

Ex-NFL Player Gets Biggest Penalty of His Life: Nearly 5 Years in Federal Prison

tennessee-titansBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Former NFL player Reed Kyle Diehl, who pleaded guilty to clipping investors in a $5 million Ponzi scheme, is headed off to prison.

U.S. District Judge David O. Carter of Santa Anna, Calif., sentenced the 31-year-old former offensive lineman for the Tennessee Titans on Monday to 4 years and 9 months in prison, saying his scheme had caused “extraordinary” harm, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Diehl of Coto de Caza, Calif.,  pleaded guilty in July to fraud charges in connection to a Ponzi in which he “collected funds with promises of high rates of returns on investment loans”, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Diehl posed as a banker who made short-term cash loans to businesses or individuals.

“Instead of using investor funds to make loans, he used investors’ money to repay earlier investors and to fund his lifestyle,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release issued in July.

Authorities say Diehl was originally arrested in March 2008 and released on bond. In January, his bond was revoked after he got involved in a real estate transaction involving a $3.5 million home using a false name and Social Security number, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Madoff Investor Found Dead in Palm Beach Pool

palm-beach-map

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON — The Bernie Madoff story has no happy ending. In fact, at this point it has no ending.

The latest twist came Sunday when philanthropist Jeffry M. Picower, 67, who is accused of earning about $7 billion from Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, was found dead in his Palm Beach mansion pool, the New York Times reported.

The Palm Beach Police, which posted no press release on the matter on its website, said the cause of death had yet to be determined, the Times reported. He had a history of cardiac issues and Parkinson’s disease.

Last December, Rene-Thierry Magon de la Villehuchet, 65, a French investment manager who had big bucks invested with Madoff, was found sitting at his desk with both wrists slashed.

To read more click here.