David Dodd 2:33 a.m., May 19
Another Ponzi Scheme Targets Seniors
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) late this week charged that Oregonian Bradley Holcom and San Diegan Jose Pinedo ran a fraudulent scheme selling $42 million of promissory notes to more than 150 investors, many of them seniors. Holcom lured investors by "offering them guaranteed monthly interest payments on purportedly safe deals," said the SEC. But it didn't work out that way: "Holcom was also running a classic Ponzi scheme," said the SEC, as new money went out to pay off earlier investors. The scheme collapsed as real estate fell apart in 2008, says the agency. Pinedo, who was Holcom's bookkeeper and an officer or manager of Holcom's numerous corporate entries, signed notes and false and misleading documents, says the commission.