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Carr Miller Ponzi Scheme: Did They Spend the Money on Themselves?

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Marlton, NJAny individual who may have lost wealth in the Carr Miller Capital Ponzi Scheme would be displeased to know that while the investor was busy making an honest living and expecting modest returns from his investment, the accused co-conspirators were allegedly enjoying themselves at a luxury skybox at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey—amongst other luxuries. One of the accused drove a new Mercedes, while investors were making do with Toyotas.

Late last year, the attorney general for the State of New Jersey characterized the proponents of the $40 million Ponzi scheme, as enjoying the high life on the backs of their investors—and paying for a lavish lifestyle and other perks with other people's money.

The Star-Ledger of Newark, New Jersey, reported just before Christmas that Carr Miller Capital, the investment firm at the center of the alleged Ponzi scheme, was a diversified enterprise—with holdings in a Hollywood development company, a charitable foundation, an upscale waterfront restaurant in Philadelphia, and an oil and gas exploration entity in Nevada.

The jilted investors were not identified in the attorney general's announcement. However, the Star-Ledger suggested that at least ten of the victimized investors hailed from the state of New Jersey, and many were friends and family members of the accused.

Carr Miller Capital operated offices in Short Hills and Marlton. According to Marc Minor, chief of the state Bureau of Securities, Carr Miller would vend nine-month promissory notes guaranteeing healthy returns. However, it is alleged that the promissory notes never actually existed.

Even so, investors were assured of returns reaching 15 percent. Account and performance statements were allegedly fabricated, with investors having the option of renewing after nine months or cashing out at the end of the term.

It appears as though most investors were satisfied with rolling their notes over, as the alleged securities fraud continued unabated for three years. The Star-Ledger reports that the alleged scheme did not come to light until some of the investors tried to actually cash out.

An ensuing investigation into the alleged consumer fraud found that some investor money was used to pay off earlier investors via interest payments. However, it was reported that the remainder went for travel, luxury vacations, concert tickets and other interests directly benefitting the proponents in Carr Miller Capital.

"The fraud was pretty simple," Attorney General Paula Dow said. "They attracted investors with promises of high rates of return on short-term investments.

"Instead of investing funds to produce high rates of return as promised, we allege that
the defendants spent investors' hard-earned money on personal luxuries and indulgences," Dow said.

Charged were Everett Charles Ford Miller, Ryan J. Carr, Brian P. Carr.

Investors affected by the Carr Miller Capital Ponzi Scheme hailed from New Jersey, Texas, Arkansas and North Carolina.

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