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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Dakota

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Sioux Falls Man Charged with Wire Fraud and Money Laundering

United States Attorney Ron Parsons announced that a Sioux Falls, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury on 11 counts of Wire Fraud and Money Laundering.

Paul Erickson, age 57, was indicted on February 5, 2019.  He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark A. Moreno on February 6, 2019, and pleaded not guilty to the Indictment.

The maximum penalty upon conviction is up to 20 years in federal prison for each count, and/or a $250,000 fine for wire fraud, and/or a $500,000 fine for money laundering, 3 years of supervised release, and up to $1,100 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.  Restitution may also be ordered.

The Indictment alleges that on or about 1996, through August of 2018, Erickson knowingly and unlawfully devised a scheme and artifice to defraud and to obtain money from many victims by means of false and fraudulent pretense, representations, and promises.  Erickson owned and operated Compass Care, Inc., Investing with Dignity, LLC, and an unnamed venture to develop land in the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota. Erickson made various false and fraudulent representations to individuals located in South Dakota and elsewhere, to induce those investors to give him money to invest in his businesses, which were part of a scheme to defraud them and personally enrich Erickson.

The charges are merely accusations and Erickson is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

The investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper is prosecuting the case.   

Erickson was released on bond.  A trial date has not been set.

Financial Fraud
Updated February 7, 2019