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Contact 6: Ponzi scheme investment promises high returns

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- FOX6's Contact 6 says it is a scam that comes with a warning that can't be emphasized enough -- whenever an investment promises unusually high returns, run in the other direction!

"They said they had this investment opportunity - and it looked like a really good deal," Dennis Sindrey said.

Sindrey was one of many victims of an elaborate investment scheme.

"(The con man) was previously an attorney in Houston, owes over$30 million in back taxes. Immediately after getting out of prison, he took up with some of his old friends," U.S. Postal Inspector Matthew Boynton said.

Officials say the con man claimed he had ownership interest in oil and gas wells in Texas. The promised return was 16% on the investment.

"The salesman was an out-of-work broker at the time, affable, genuinely friendly, ate dinner with these folks, hung out at their home, spent time in their homes, went to parties with them - really introduced them into their lives and vouched for these investments," Boynton said.

"The first 10 months I started receiving the checks, then intermittent, then not at all. And that`s when we realized it was a Ponzi scheme," Sindrey said.

FOX6's Contact 6 says that in schemes like this, it's buyer beware. It's up to the individual to check out those they are thinking of investing with. Recouping losses can be difficult, if not impossible.