Charles Ponzi was the infamous swindler who payed out returns with other investors' money. The 'Ponzi scheme' is named after him. After running a highly profitable and expansive investment scheme. July 30, 2021 at 6:48 p.m. Financial restitution for one of the nation’s largest and most complex Ponzi schemes has ended after more than $722 million was doled out to victims and creditors.
A McKinney man who ran a Ponzi scheme has been sentenced to five years in federal prison and ordered to pay $13 million in restitution to his victims, announced Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Prerak Shah.
Patrick O. Howard – owner of Insured Liquidity Partners CGF I, Insured Liquidity Partners CGF II, and Capital Ventures, LLC – pleaded guilty to securities fraud in November 2020. He was sentenced Thursday by U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle and taken into custody immediately after the hearing.
In plea papers, Mr. Howard, 49, admitted to running a Ponzi-type scheme, recruiting more than 100 investors to purchase $13 million in membership units for $50,000 apiece.
His companies promised investors 12% annual returns, paid quarterly, and “insured liquidity.”
However, instead of properly investing the money, the companies issued phony account statements and paid any investors who elected to receive their earnings quarterly out of the investments of later investors, rather than out of the earnings of the fund.
Mr. Howard falsely represented himself as a registered investment advisor and claimed his companies saw 20% annual earnings. Promising that investors could not possibly lose money due to insurance that offset poor performance, the defendant induced at least one investor to turn over his entire retirement savings to the fund.
Two victims testified at his sentencing hearing, including one who told the judge she lost her daughter’s college savings after investing with Mr. Howard.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Dallas Field Office and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service conducted the investigation, with a parallel investigation conducted by the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission. Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Wirmani prosecuted the criminal case.
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