Just the tip of the Pyramid Iceberg
Val Southwick Ponzi Scheme - Bishop
Shawn Merriman Ponzi Scheme- Bishop
Anthony Vassallo "In California, the SEC said Vassallo told investors, many of whom he met in church, that he had developed a software program that allowed him to buy and sell options that generated profits of 3.5 percent a month with little risk."
Kleenmaid collapse - " What's more, chairman Andrew Young and his brother Brad were Mormons and that added to their image as upright and ethical members of the community."
Mortgage Fraud - Sentenced were Bradley Grant Kitchen of Provo, David R. Bolick of Sandy, Steve Wells Cloward of Orem, Ron K. Clarke of Provo, and Jeffery David Garrett of Provo.......... The men were indicted by a federal grand jury in 2007 on charges they conspired to create a multimillion dollar mortgage fraud scheme involving a Utah County development that was originally thought to total $18 million in fraudulent loans.
Ted James Johnson Jr-
Investors believed in Giles County businesses
People who gave money to Ted James Johnson Jr. said he seemed to know what he was doing......It was not the cost but the deceit that bothers him, Charles Wayne Gentry said gently from the witness stand Thursday in federal court in Roanoke.
He'd gathered his savings, sold his house and store and counseled his wife and brother-in-law to put in their inheritance -- $724,000 in all -- only to see the money disappear in the collapse of Mountain Investments and Dogwood Farms, two businesses run by a pair of Giles County financial advisers indicted last year on 42 charges tied to securities fraud....
Johnson's investors included fellow Mormons from Giles County and beyond, teachers and university professors, and businessmen.
A major Utah investment fund has collapsed, leaving more than 268 creditors owed $168 million.
Of that total, investors in the Waterford Loan Fund from Utah and 19 other states are owed $100 million, according to preliminary figures compiled by a contract manager for the company and attorneys. Assets were listed at $40 million.
Leticia Avila -
"Leticia Avila used her LDS Church connections and the promise of cooperation from a high-ranking immigration official to con $4,000 apiece from undocumented immigrants attempting to get legal visas, according to more than two dozen affidavits from victims.
Many of the alleged victims say what is most upsetting is that they were betrayed by someone who preyed on their religious faith. They trusted Avila because she was a fellow member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Spanish-speaking branch in Millcreek. In some cases, it was a local church leader who suggested they talk with Avila about becoming legal. "
"Federal prosecutors on Tuesday accused an Alpine man of defrauding investors in a multimillion dollar real estate scheme.
U.S. Attorney Brett Tolman said Rick Koerber collected more than $100 million from investors but spent much of it on expensive cars, restaurants, movie making and his own housing. Tolman announced a three-count indictment of Koerber on Tuesday.
The number of victims, most of whom live in Utah, could be in the hundreds, said Tolman. But investigators have yet to determine which of Koerber's investors are "purely victims" and who may have "facilitated the crime," he said.
Koerber, who dubs himself a "Capitalist, Mormon, Dad" on his Web site, could not be reached for comment Thursday. Koerber was an ardent backer and donor to the school voucher movement in 2007. "
New York Times article on Daren Palmer, faithful Mormon in Idaho Falls, who agreed this week to plead guilty in a $78 million dollar scheme where he conned his family and his fellow Mormons.http://is.gd/inUQmH
SALT LAKE CITY -- A Lindon man suspected of orchestrating a Ponzi scheme and defrauding investors out of more than $18 million pleaded guilty to wire fraud in federal court on Thursday.
Jeffrey Lane Mowen, 48, entered the plea as part of a deal with federal prosecutors. In exchange, prosecutors dropped two additional charges of wire fraud, as well as charges of solicitation to commit a crime of violence, tampering with a witness and retaliating against a witness.
Melodie Rydalch, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Utah, said though Mowen will be sentenced later, his penalty has already been determined.
Wayne Ogden from Ogden, Utah. Active LDS at time of multi-million dollar ponzi scheme.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed a securities fraud lawsuit last month against Salt Lake City-based Art Intellect Inc. and its three principals, Patrick Merrill Brody, Laura A. Roser, and Gregory D. Wood.
In its original complaint, the SEC says Art Intellect, which operates under the name Mason Hill, collected more than $2.5 million from about 75 investors since April, 2009. The company reportedly claimed that the funds would be used to buy and rehabilitate distressed real estate in Ohio, Florida, and Kansas, and that the company would find renters for each of the properties. The properties were not identified in the lawsuit.
Investors, who were allegedly asked to submit a deposit of $20,000 per property, reportedly were promised returns of 10 percent to 30 percent, with monthly net rental profits of $650 to $1,000.
However, the SEC alleges that the funds were used for Mason Hill's operating expenses, as well as to pay for "lavish trips" and personal expenses for Mr. Brody and Ms. Roser. Funds from later investors also were reportedly used to buy properties and make payments to earlier investors.
n March 23, 2011, it filed a complaint against Mike Watson Capital, LLC, a company based in Provo, Utah. The SEC also named Michael P. Watson, a resident of Mapleton, Utah, and Joshua F. Escobedo, a resident of Spanish Fork, Utah as defendants. According to its press release the SEC has alleged that Watson and Escobedo “raised more than $27.5 million from more than 120 investors through Mike Watson Capital’s issuance of promissory notes… Watson and Escobedo told investors that returns were generated by real estate investments, and backed by substantial equity and cash flow produced by company properties. In reality, the properties never generated sufficient income to cover investment interest or redemptions, and therefore investor returns were paid primarily from new investors’ funds.” The SEC alleged that the company owes more than $19 million in unpaid principal and interest on its promissory notes to investors, its real estate portfolio has tanked, and commercial banks have foreclosed on at least nine properties. This one looks pretty grim for the people who initially invested $27 million of their hard-earned money with these two Utah County guys -
A Hyde Park man has been accused in federal court of orchestrating a Ponzi scheme under the guise of an online payday loan company.
The Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday filed a complaint in U.S. District Court against John Scott Clark, 58, and his businesses, Logan-based Impact Cash and Impact Payment Systems. The SEC alleges that between March 2006 and September 2010, more than $47 million was raised from 120 investors who were promised lavish returns for funding payday loans.
According to the complaint, Clark sold securities through both companies that totaled $47 million. About $4 million of that allegedly was raised for equity investments in the companies, while the rest came from investors who agreed to provide capital to the companies for payday loans.
Raymond P. Morris, 42, of Draper, conducted an unregistered offering and operated the Ponzi scheme “at least” between March 2007 and January 2009. The scheme defrauded “at least 90 investors” and was a Ponzi out of the gate, the agency said.Three other Utah men, including attorney Luc D. Nguyen, 40, of Draper, helped the fraud spread by conducting no due diligence, recklessly repeating assertions made by Morris as though they were truthful and coming up with their own lies to drive money to the scheme, the agency alleged.Also charged were James L. Haley, 49, of Draper, and Jay J. Linford, 49, of Orem.
PROVO - The aftermath of a massive Ponzi scheme that may have affected hundreds in Utah County has turned into a nasty tangle of overlapping court cases.
The questions are as basic as who is a victim and who is a perpetrator. And the answers likely won't come any time soon.
Prosecutors last October secured a temporary restraining order from 4th District Judge Fred Howard freezing over $2 million in assets belonging to several people connected with the California payday lending company Money & More.
Prosecutors in April filed an array of securities fraud and money laundering charges against five people: Larry O. Bosh, of St. George; D. Shawn Benson, of Ivins, Washington County; Michael J. Smith, of Mona, Juab County; David Q. Poulsen, of Salem; and Gale Robinson, of San Jacinto, Calif., the owner of Money & More.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP)-
A Utah money manager accused of running a multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme has pleaded guilty to a federal wire fraud charge in exchange for a 10-year prison sentence.
Jeffrey Mowen entered the plea in Salt Lake City's U.S.
udge Dee Benson set sentencing for April 15.
As part of the plea agreement, Mowen will forfeit any assets gained from the scheme, including 29 cars that were not sold at public auction.
Defense attorney Stephen McCaughey says in exchange for the plea, prosecutors agreed to drop a murder-for-hire charge.
Prosecutors contend Mowen defrauded investors of millions of dollars and tried to arrange the killing of four witnesses. He was arrested last April in Panama.
Former secretary of Murray painting contractor steals $1.3 million
July 23rd, 2011 @ 5:04pm
By Dennis Romboy
SALT LAKE CITY - A former secretary for a Murray painting contractor funneled more than a $1 million in customer payments into a personal account, according to a federal indictment.
Pamela Jane Madsen is charged in U.S. District Court with five counts of mail fraud and four counts of money laundering. Madsen worked for Professional Painting Inc., where her duties included payroll, data entry and preparing checks for deposit.
Prosecutors say Madsen created an account at U.S. Bank in November 2007 under a slight variation of her employer's name. For the next three years, she deposited customers' checks totaling at least $1.3 million into the account for her personal use, according to the indictment.
Madsen credited customers' accounts on the company's books to make it look like they had paid their bills, according to the indictment. Some of the checks came from two of the state largest general contractors, Jacobsen Construction and Big-D Construction.
The indictment seeks to seize from Madsen two pickup trucks, a BMW sedan, two snowmobiles and homes in Bluffdale and Taylorsville.
SEC: Two Utah County Men Ran Ponzi Scheme
Ballard Spahr partner Brent R. Baker is representing one of two Utah men accused in federal court of running a $27.5 million Ponzi scheme. Mr. Baker's client is accused of posing as a broker for a Provo-based business, according to a complaint filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Mr. Baker said his client wasn’t aware that the business was running a Ponzi scheme and has been cooperating with the SEC investigation. He "is looking forward to putting this behind him," Mr. Baker said.
Utah Ponzi Scheme Revealed
His name is John Scott Clark, and according to the Securities and Exchange Commission, he’s a Ponzier. The Utah man and his two funds, Impact Cash and Impact Payment Systems, scored $47 million from gullible investors, including three hedge funds that should have known better.
Provo councilman Steve Turley charged with felonies
PROVO -- After a year of complaints, doing their own investigation and raising Cain at Provo Municipal Council meetings, a group of citizens knew they were heard on Wednesday when the Utah County Attorney's Office charged Municipal Councilman Steve Turley with 10 second-degree felonies and his fellow elected officials asked him to resign.
The "exhaustive" official investigation from the Utah County Bureau of Investigations took into account complaints, Turley's activities on the Municipal Council and as a developer and landowner and a request from the city for an ethical investigation, although they only looked at possible criminal activity, not any ethical questions.
The evidence gathered supported seven counts of communications fraud, two counts of exploitation of a vulnerable adult and one count of a pattern of unlawful activity. This came a week after the group of 23 citizens again approached the city and asked for an investigation and the meeting itself devolved into mayhem.
Those that made it through the county attorney's screening process may not have been the charges expected. According to documents filed with 4th District Court in Provo, the investigator obtained evidence that Turley "engaged in a course of conduct to defraud others or obtain money, property or other items by means of false of fraudulent pretenses, representations, promises or material omissions," through which he received property with a value of more than $5,000. Some of these will sound familiar; others may not.
Turley's activities started raising eyebrows most publicly in 2009, when he approached the city about doing reclamation work in Slate Canyon. He told residents and the Municipal Council that he had no interest in profits. The construction company with which he was negotiating, however, bought more than $1 million in equipment because of Turley's representations that this would be a significant mining project, according to court documents. When Turley was challenged about the amount of gravel to be removed, he told the council it was about a third of the amount he'd told the construction company; he also admitted he could profit from developing the land.
Other charges dealt with a two-year court case about a million-dollar tract of land in Diamond Fork Canyon. According to the probable cause statements, Turley in June 2009 presented a copy of a check for $2.645 million to the attorney for Trudy Childs, who owns 2,500 acres in Diamond Fork Canyon; Turley represented that those funds were available to enforce a 90-day option he held to buy the property. The county investigator found that Turley did not have the actual check, and the owner of the funds did not intend to allow Turley to use the money. Turley sued Childs two years ago to enforce the contract; the lawsuit has been tied up in dueling paperwork ever since. Turley claimed that he gave childs a 90-day, $30,000 loan and she gave him an option to buy her property if she didn't pay him in 90 days. She didn't; he tried to exercise the option. Childs claimed that she only intended to give him an option on 80 acres of her property and that he falsified paperwork to get all of her land.
That's not the only lawsuit that mixes in with the charges. One of the counts against Turley alleges that in November 2007, he had an elderly person sign over property using a quitclaim deed; he would then deed another property in exchange for that. The transfer of property never happened, and Turley then took out a loan using the man's original property, which has since gone into foreclosure. This is likely Ted Taylor's property, the Carpenter Seed building on South State Street in Provo. Taylor sued Turley early last year; he claimed he didn't intend to sell Turley the land on which his building sat and he also never got the townhouse that was supposed to be built on the land west of the store.
In another case, Turley sued the person he's now being charged with victimizing. Between Aug. 1, 2007, and June 30, 2008, Turley, while doing business with someone who is elderly and also reportedly has physical and mental impairment, "unjustly or improperly used or managed the resources of the victim by purporting to have her sign over her life lease on her residence without any compensation, and without her understanding what she signed, or if she signed," according to the documents. This is likely the case dealing with Deanna Thorn, who owned a home and Brand X Burger in Springville. He still has a lawsuit pending against her.
In June 2008, Turley met with the business owner, presumably Thorn, and negotiated with her to re-open a local restaurant in Springville, then he leased the same property to someone else at about the same time, according to the documents.
Several counts dealt with his property development. According to documents, in December 2006, Turley had a potential homebuyer sign a purchasing agreement raising the offer price of a home Turley was building to $265,000, but promised that the final price would still be $172,000. Turley then allegedly used the new agreement, absent the lower final price, to get an extension on a loan from the bank, which the bank would not have provided with the complete information.
In January 2007, while building two homes, Turley allegedly ordered cabinets for accessory apartments in the homes knowing that city zoning did not allow for accessory apartments, but told the potential homebuyers they were acceptable, which allowed him to charge more for the homes. He sold four of these homes; all later had financial difficulty and two were going through foreclosure.
Finally, in September 2007, a person moved into a home Turley owned, and Turley said he was going to deed the house to him. The documents state that deed was never recorded and couldn't be because Turley didn't have clear title to the home. He then listed that home as an asset in a loan application.
Turley was elected in 2003, re-elected in 2007 and is up for re-election this year; he is not running again. He is currently serving as a high council member in the Provo Bonneville Stake of the LDS Church.
Read more: http://www.heraldextra.com/news/local/central/provo/article_341120bc-b8a7-11e0-a5e9-001cc4c03286