Ponzi Scheme in Puerto Rico
Earlier this August 2012, the SEC announced charges against Ricardo Bonilla Rojas, a Puerto Rico resident, who was running a $7 million Ponzi scheme from August 2005 to February 2009.
He marketed his company, Shadai Yire, allegedly promising – true to form – returns as large as 50% on no-risk investments. Allegedly these investments were for the purpose of trading in commodities from China, South America and Europe. The amount of the investments varied widely, according to authorities. The SEC has accused him of stealing $700,000 for himself.
The majority of the 200 inexperienced investors he preyed on were in Puerto Rico, Florida,
North Carolina and New York, most of them evangelical Christians and unsuspecting factory workers. According to Eric Bustillo, director of the SEC’s Miami Regional Office, “[He] was fleecing the flock.”
He has pleaded not guilty in court, has been released on $130,000 bail, and has been ordered to home confinement.