Victims of ponzi scheme want money back - WNEM TV 5

Victims of ponzi scheme want money back

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BAY CITY, MI (WNEM) -

It's been called the most complex ponzi scheme ever to hit the region.  

Joel Wilson is charged with bilking more than $6 million from investors through a phony investment scheme.

Officials said they've seized $2.5 million in assets connected to Wilson. According to court documents there are about 120 victims hoping they can recoup some of their losses. 

On Thursday several of those victims held a protest outside the federal courthouse in Bay City.

Officials are figuring out what to do with the $2.5 million of assets connected to Wilson. Meanwhile victims gathered outside the federal courthouse in Bay City in hopes to speed up that process.

Some of the residents gathered have never met before Thursday, but they all share something in common. They all said they lost their life savings investing with Wilson. 

According to court documents Wilson defrauded investors out of about $6.5 million dollars in an elaborate ponzi scheme.

Vicki Tedrow said she invested more than $200,000 dollars with Wilson.

Carole Kennelly said she invested most of what she had saved up for retirement. She's not only hurting financially, it's also taken a toll on her health. 

As the man accused of defrauding them sits in a Bay County jail cell they are wondering if they can recoup some of their losses through Wilson's assets that were seized. 

The answer is yes, but when that could happen is unknown. Sources said this is one of the most complex cases of fraud in the history of the region. 

Recovering assets connected to Wilson is in the early stages. First investigators have to find all of the assets. Second, the value of the assets have to be stabilized. In this case real estate properties have to be maintained. Third, investors have to decide what they would like do with that money.

Then finally assets would be dispersed to the victims.

Wilson isn't due back in court until September. Meanwhile the victims say in the end they want justice and if possible the money they lost.

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