Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Ponzi Schemers Sentenced In $50 Million Fraud Case

Randall T. Treadwell, 51, of Savannah, Georgia and Arnulfo M. Acosta, 45, an attorney based in Edinburg, Texas, were sentenced last week for their parts in a $50 million fraudulent investment scam. Treadwell was sentenced t0 25 years in prison and ordered to pay $44 million in restitution. Acosta, who plead guilty in May 2007 to charges of conspiracy and making a false statement, was sentenced to 87 months in prison and ordered to pay $20 million in restitution. Two other co-conspirators were convicted by a jury along with Treadwell on wire fraud and conspiracy charges in June 2008: Ricky D. Sluder, 51, of Whitehouse, Texas and Larry C. Saturday, 66, of Savannah, Georgia. The four conspirators used three front investment companies, Learn Waterhouse, Inc., Wealth Builders Club, Inc., and Qwest International, Inc., to lure investors with promises of returns of up to 50%. They have admitted to paying earlier investors with "lulling payments" and using investment funds to pay for personal goods and services and generally living lavish lifestyles. Sluder and Saturday are scheduled for sentencing in January. The four were originally indicted in September 2005.

Read the story here, here and here.

Read the DOJ announcement here and here.

Read the SEC litigation release here.

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