Michael T. Sigilitto, of Webster Groves, faces accusations of misleading investors from 2000 – 2007 in a Ponzi scheme to the tune of $52.5 million. Sigilitto, in a classic example of affinity fraud, is said to have used his social and religious connections, along with high-pressure tactics, to reel in investors.
The scheme is said to have involved the loan of money from investors in the U.S. to clients in the United Kingdom for high returns over a short period of time. According to Dennis L. Baker, head of the FBI in St. Louis, “the amount of money stolen in this case is the largest in the history of the Eastern District of Missouri."
Reportedly, the scheme also involved two others, James Scott Brown of Leawood, Kansas, and Derek J. Smith of Oxfordshire, England. All three face charges of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. Sigilitto is additionally facing 21 counts of money laundering, mail fraud, and wire fraud.
Sigilitto has already been involved in civil suits from the investors he allegedly defrauded. Among the items seized from Sigilitto’s home by the FBI were rare books, expensive wines, and Persian rugs. Sigilitto has pleaded not guilty.
The securities fraud attorneys with Meyer Wilson have recovered losses for victims of securities fraud nationwide. If you have been the victim of a Ponzi scheme, contact us today at (800) 738-1960 to talk about your legal options.