PONZI OPERATOR WHO COLLECTED $2 MILLION FROM VICTIMS SENTENCED TO NEARLY FOUR YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON
LOS ANGELES – A Woodland Hills man who bilked more than 20 victims out of approximately $2 million in less than one year has been sentenced to 46 months in federal prison.
Alfred Eugene Parker, 32, was sentenced Monday by United States District Judge R. Gary Klausner, who remanded the defendant into custody at the conclusion of the sentencing hearing. Parker was sentenced after pleading guilty in September 2010 to three counts of wire fraud and one count of making a false statement to a bank.
Parker was a counselor at a non-profit agency that provided credit-repair advise to low-income families. In late 2006, Parker started an investment company – Skyline Investment Group – that he used to solicit investors with promises that their money would be used to help needy homeowners who were facing foreclosure on their homes. Targeting primarily African-American victims, including professional athletes and people in the entertainment industry, Parker and Skyline lured investors with “guaranteed” returns as high as 40 percent in less than three months.
Instead of using investors’ money to help distressed homeowners, Parker used the money to finance a luxurious lifestyle, which included a Rolls-Royce Phantom, two Ferraris, a $2.5 million home, and trips to high-end resorts in Hawaii and Santa Barbara. Parker also used some of the money to make Ponzi payments to earlier investors.
In November 2007, Parker sought a $1 million line of credit from Broadway Federal Bank. When applying for the loan, Parker submitted forged documents to the bank and falsely claimed that he had $2 million in savings and that he owned valuable real estate in Los Angeles and Cleveland. When the bank approved a $200,000 line of credit, Parker drew down the funds in less than two months.
During Monday’s sentencing hearing, victims told Judge Klausner that Parker had preyed on African American victims in their community and that he had presented himself as a religious man who would use their investments to help needy homeowners in the area.
The case against Parker is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Release No. 11-012
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