HAMILTON, Bermuda, Wednesday January 2, 2013 - A Montana judge has jailed two California residents for their roles in a Ponzi scheme involving Bermudian Andre Curtis, once the election campaign manager for former Premier Dr Ewart Brown.
According to local media reports, Shanna Raymond of Oakland and Brian Gill of San Pedro was convicted of investment fraud and money laundering.
US District Judge Donald Molloy sentenced Raymond to two years in prison and ordered the 37-year-old to pay US$1.5 million in restitution.
The judge jailed Gill , 55 for 18 months and made him pay US$570,000 in restitution.
Prosecutors said Raymond and Gill agreed to promote investments by Dan Two Feathers of Hamilton, Montana.
Two Feathers, who spearheaded the scam, was jailed in June for six years on investment fraud and other charges.
Shawn Swor, another who pleaded guilty to his involvement, was sentenced to two years and three months in July.
In September, Terrance Paulin was jailed for two years and nine months and ordered to repay victims following the scam, which saw investors conned out of more than $2.4 million.
Paulin, of Missoula, Montana, admitted conspiracy to commit investment fraud in a hearing before the same judge.
The court had previously heard people were falsely promised huge returns on their investments, with their cash then funneled through a front company which had accounts at the Bank of Bermuda.
Montana State Auditors Office told how Bermudian businessman Curtis helped run the scheme. Curtis was fined $335,000 by the Montana Commissioner in November 2010. The following month, he was jailed for 15 months by the Bermuda courts for operating an unlicensed investment business.
Curtis briefly campaigned in Pembroke South East in last month’s Bermuda general election — in which the One Bermuda Alliance ended he Progressive Labour Party’s 14 years in power — but pulled out after he was sent back to prison for unpaid bills. Brown was Premier between 2006 and 2010. (CMC) Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)