Last week, the BCSC issued a panel decision finding four BC residents had perpetrated a “deliberate and well-organized” fraud in a Ponzi scheme that resulted in the loss of over US$10 million by more than 800 investors in BC and elsewhere.

Media, CTV in particular, researched the case and found several victims who were willing to talk about their experience. They spoke out in order to warn people not to make the same mistakes that they did. They cautioned people to be wary about falling for the promise of big returns.

It is hard for victims to talk to the public about what happened to them because, in one sense, they want to forget the whole ordeal. We think it is important to applaud those who are willing to talk about what happened to them. In this case, the Ponzi scheme started as an ‘investment club’. Investors were promised seven per cent return, resulting in compounded returns of more than 100 percent.

The lesson here is that high returns always present high risk and in an illegal ponzi scheme, it usually means that the investors will lose all of their investment.

Check out our Fraud Warning Signs. If you, your family or friends are approached to invest in one that has any of these characteristics, please report it to BCSC Inquiries by phone, or online.

Suggested Reading

Elder Abuse Pt. 3: Investment schemes

Financial literacy: Helping kids succeed in the classroom

In Your Community - March 2014

More Resources

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