News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

Eagan man pleads guilty to defrauding investors in a real estate investment program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 10, 2013


MINNEAPOLIS—Yesterday in federal court in St. Paul, a 52-year-old Eagan man pleaded guilty to participating in a scheme to defraud real estate investors. On April 9, 2013, Tonii Carlos Greene pleaded guilty to one count of transactional money laundering. Greene, who was charged on March 20, 2013, in a superseding indictment, entered his plea before United States District Court Judge Donovan W. Frank.

In his plea agreement, Greene admitted that from early 2007 through at least August of 2008, he devised and participated in a scheme that involved the solicitation of money from investors under false pretenses. In particular, Greene solicited investments in a purported program through which properties were to be bought at a discount, rehabilitated, and either refinanced or sold. Investors were told that their money was a short-term investment loan and would be repaid with profits or interest. Investors were not told that their funds would be used for Greene’s personal use, or that their purported investment returns would be paid from later investor funds. The estimated loss to victims due to Greene’s actions is more than $1 million.

For his crime, Greene faces a potential maximum penalty of ten years in federal prison. Judge Frank will determine his sentence at a future hearing, yet to be scheduled.

This case is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations, and the Minnesota Department of Commerce, with cooperation from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Benjamin F. Langner and William J. Otteson.

This law enforcement action is in part sponsored by the interagency Financial Fraud
Enforcement Task Force. The task force was established to wage an aggressive, coordinated
and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. It includes representatives
from a broad range of federal agencies, regulatory authorities, inspectors general, and state and
local law enforcement who, working together, bring to bear a powerful array of criminal and
civil enforcement resources. The task force is working to improve efforts across the federal
executive branch, and, with state and local partners, investigate and prosecute significant
financial crimes, ensure just and effective punishment for those who perpetrate financial crimes,
combat discrimination in the lending and financial markets, and recover proceeds for victims of
financial crimes.

The task force and the U.S. Attorney’s Office wants to remind people to protect themselves from investment fraud. For more information, visit http://www.stopfraud.gov/protect-securities.html.

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