harold Brubaker at Philly.com is reporting that Jim Melvin, a consumer that fell for the Real Talk Network pitch of paying $3,000 for their debt coaching hoax, was referred to a Ponzi scheme by the Real Talk Network. The Ponzi scheme was run by Robert Stinson, Jr, who had been convicted several times for financial fraud and larceny.
Here is how it worked. The now closed Real Talk Network referred Jim Melvin to Brentwood Equity Advisors who advised Melvin to invest his $20,000 retirement account in the Life’s Good High Yield Fund run by Stinson and managed by Entrust New Direction. The fund promised a ten percent annual return, which should have been a red flag right there. The Securities and Exchange Commission closed down the funds on June 29, 2010.
The Securities and Exchange complaint against Robert Stinson, Jr, Life’s Good, Inc, Life’s Good Stabl Mortgage Fund, LLC, Life’s Good High Yield Mortgage Fund, LLC, Life’s Good Capital Growth Fund, LLC, IA Capital Fund, LLC, Keystone State Capital Corporation, First Commonwealth Service Company, Susan Stinson, Christine Stinson, Michael Stinson, and Laura Marable alleges:
- The Ponzi funds had been in operation since 2006 and raised at least $16 million from 140 investors.
- Stinson had been stealing money for his own personal use and transferring money to family members.
- Defendant Stinson, age 55, is a resident of Berwyn, Pennsylvania. Stinson was previously charged with federal securities fraud in 1990.
- Stinson also has a criminal history, including three convictions on federal charges of fraud and/or larceny, and two convictions on state charges of conspiracy and/or fraud. With his former wife, Stinson twice filed for bankruptcy.
The lawsuit, which reads like a soap opera, can be found here.