N.C. Man Receives 50 Years In $40 Mil Black Diamond Ponzi
A North Carolina man has been sentenced to 50 years in prison for running a $40 million Ponzi scam that victimized almost 400 investors, many of over the age of 75. The Winston-Salem Journal reported that Keith Simmons told investors his Black Diamond Capital Solutions fund had returned more than 134 percent in a single year and had more than $378 million invested, when in fact all the cash went to support his lavish lifestyle. Simmons, 47, was convicted at trial in 2010 of fraud and money laundering, the Journal said. He was portrayed at trial as an ego-maniac who quoted scripture to lure investors and purchased land on top of a mountain, so he could look down on the county where many of his elderly victims lived. A woman who helped Simmons run his scam was also sentenced last week to 4 ½ years in prison, and other conspirators are due for trial or sentencing, the newspaper said.