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Ashe Man Convicted in Ponzi Scheme PDF Print
Written by Steve Frank   
Friday, 17 December 2010 06:26

A Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors of $40 million lead yesterday to the conviction of an Ashe County man in Federal District Court in Charlotte. According to court testimony, more than 400 investors lost their money in the scheme.

Keith Franklin Simmons, the one-time owner of Black Diamond Capital Solutions and High South Realty in Jefferson, was convicted of securities fraud, wire fraud and money laundering. The Winston-Salem Journal reported that many of the investors gave Simmons their life savings to invest in what he said was a foreign-currency-trading program that returning more than 4 percent a month, according to the government's trial brief. Prosecutors said Simmons didn't invest any of the money in currency-trading. Instead, they said, he made $18 million in bogus interest payments to induce more people to invest. He spent more than $4.9 million buying real estate in Ashe County and millions more for his side businesses, including an ownership interest in Extreme Fighting Championship and High South Realty. Sentencing will be held later.


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