A currency trader who fled to Latin America after reportedly bilking conservative and Christian investors of $25 million is now back in this country and facing charges. He pleads "not guilty."
Jeffrey Lowrance started working from Peru since 2006, when he was stripped of his commodity and currency licenses, and then moved to Peru.
Despite the logistical difficulties, he managed to start up a conservative newspaper, USA Tomorrow, as a marketing vehicle and distribute it to backers of 2008 presidential candidate Ron Paul in particular.
Unfortunately, instead of paying 4% to 7% a month, his "unique currency market strategy" was actually a Ponzi scheme, regulators say.
While he collected a significant number of accounts, the assets the scheme pulled in were not huge Madoff-level rich people, but middle-class investors who trusted him with, on average, something like $68,000 apiece.
After his extradition, he now faces charges for fraud and money laundering. He's already lost a $160 million class action suit.