Multimillion-Dollar Real Estate Ponzi Schemer Indicted For Fraud And Money Laundering

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From at least 2006 through October 2009, Connolly orchestrated a real estate investment fraud scheme in which he took in more than $50 million from more than 200 victims, causing losses of at least $9 million.

To induce victims to invest, Connolly made various types of materially false and misleading statements and omissions. He told victims their money would be used to purchase a specific property, and the property would generate rental income that would be used to pay investors monthly distributions. Connolly also told victims their money would be held in escrow until the closing of a purported real estate transaction and each property would be financially independent from all the others. Connolly misrepresented the amount of equity victims had in the properties, the condition of the properties, and the financial performance of the properties.

Connolly took significant portions of his victims’ money, which had been provided for specific real estate transactions, and used it for other purposes, without disclosing the diversions of funds to victims. These included funding unrelated real estate transactions in which Connolly was engaged; paying prior victims; and paying himself. The scheme collapsed in the summer of 2009, after Connolly began to default on the mortgage payments for the investment properties.

Justice.gov press release link: here