Fraud in the News

Ponzi schemer flees on water scooter, shysters rent parking spots and more

Ponzi schemer flees on water scooter across and under lake

Bernie Madoff needed an underwater scooter! Accused Ponzi schemer Matthew Piercey, 44, tried to escape authorities on a red submergible Yamaha 350Li scooter across, and under, Shasta Lake Nov. 16, 2020, in California, according to a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) release and The New York Times.

Piercey, of Palo Cedro, California, fled in his truck to Shasta Lake when members of the California Highway Patrol tried to apprehend him. They arrested him after he emerged from the lake on the scooter in wet street clothes. A grand jury had returned an indictment Nov. 12 after charging him with wire fraud, mail fraud, money laundering and witness tampering.

Kenneth Winton, 67, of Oroville, California, Piercey’s business partner, was charged separately by criminal information with conspiracy to commit fraud.

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