Canadian Ponzi scheme nets fines for three men

Thu Feb 21, 2008 3:07pm EST
 
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia (Reuters) - Securities regulators on Thursday ordered three men to pay nearly C$17 million in fines and penalties for running a Ponzi scheme that bilked nearly 90 Canadian investors.

The International Fiduciary Corp SA promised investors returns of 6 percent per month without risk, but the men instead used the money to pay themselves and keep the scheme going, the British Columbia Securities Commission said.

Preston Pinkett II, from Virginia, Malcolm Stevenson and Daniel Byer, both from British Columbia, were ordered to pay the courts the C$12.7 million they earned from the scheme and fined C$4 million in administrative penalties.

Investors gave the men over C$23 million and it was unlikely they would receive any "meaningful repayment" of the money they were still owed, the regulators warned.

(Reporting Allan Dowd, Editing by Renato Andrade)