Berwyn Man Sentenced To More Than 33 Years For Multi-Million Dollar Ponzi Scheme
Robert Stinson Jr., 56, of Berwyn, PA, was sentenced today to 400 months in prison for a Ponzi scheme that defrauded more than 260 investors of more than $17 million. Stinson pleaded guilty August 15, 2011, before U.S. District Court Judge Michael M. Baylson, to five counts of wire fraud, four counts of mail fraud, nine counts of money laundering, one count of bank fraud, three counts of filing false tax returns, two counts of obstruction of justice, and two counts of making false statements to federal agents.
Since 2006, Stinson ran a company called Life’s Good, Inc., that solicited investments in one of four real estate hedge funds, promising fixed returns of between 10 and 16 percent, annually. However, rather than invest the money as promised, Stinson ran an elaborate “Ponzi” scheme that he used to steal investors’ money. Stinson falsely represented to investors that he was a graduate of Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a wealth of business experience, when, in reality, he had been convicted of fraud multiple times and had previously been enjoined from committing securities fraud by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.
As part of this investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation executed numerous search warrants on June 29, 2010 and seized two Mercedes Benz sedans that Stinson had purchased with proceeds from his fraud. At the time of the search, Stinson obstructed justice by wiring stolen funds out of Life’s Good bank accounts to other accounts. Stinson’s wife, Susan, will be sentenced tomorrow for obstructing the SEC’s investigation of her husband.
In addition to the prison term, Stinson was ordered to pay full restitution - $14 million - to his 263 victims and complete three years supervised release.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, and the Securities Exchange Commission. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David L. Axelrod.
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, EASTERN DISTRICTof PENNSYLVANIA
Suite 1250, 615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106
PATTY HARTMAN, Media Contact, 215-861-8525