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Bay City Entrepreneur Charged in Ponzi scheme

A former businessman from Bay City, Michigan, has been charged with nine felony counts related to larceny and theft through an alleged Ponzi scheme that he perpetuated. The man faces charges including racketeering, selling unregistered securities and larceny, along with the sale of fraudulent securities. In total, the charges could land the man in federal prison for more than 55 years, assuming that sentences are served consecutively. The man's wife has also been detained for refusing to help with a police investigation related to the charges.

The couple's family recently announced the creation of a legal defense fund for the man and his wife. The trust will provide financial aid for publishing and distributing information related to the case. Representatives for the family say the man is not guilty of the crimes with which he has been charged, and they have accused local prosecutors of seeking political fame instead of pursuing actual justice. The attorney general is abusing his office, according to the suspects' families, by attempting to destroy his personal and political enemies.

Media reports show that the charges were officially filed in January, though the legal defense fund was established in March. The couple currently resides in Germany, according to local media reports, while Michigan prosecutors are attempting to force the man's return to the United States. It is not clear when the man and his wife will enter formal pleas in connection with the charges.

The legal defense fund was established to bring awareness of the case to the local and national media. The money collected through the fund could also ostensibly be used for legal fees connected with the case. This creative solution to a financial challenge shows the family's strong business acumen and awareness of the American legal system. Suspects of all persuasions can consider opening legal defense funds to help them pay for the most qualified attorneys. The trust in this case will also be used to help other suspects in similar situations.

Source: Live, "Former Bay City businessman charged in Ponzi scheme launches legal defense fund," Kathryn Lynch-Morin, March 18, 2013

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