BUSINESS

Five charged with fraud and money laundering in $92-million Ponzi scheme

01/30/2015 04:15 EST | Updated 04/01/2015 05:59 EDT
TORONTO - Former executives at Seaquest Corp. and Seaquest Capital Corp. have been charged in connection with an alleged Ponzi scheme that bilked investors out of $92 million.

The RCMP allege that Seaquest collected the funds from investors and promised them rate of return of up to 36 per cent.

Police allege the money was never invested and instead used as part of a Ponzi scheme where money from new investors was used to pay previous investors.

The company then convinced the previous investors to reinvest those funds, the RCMP says.

In November 2011, Seaquest filed for bankruptcy to obtain creditor protection from the investors, saying it owed about $75 million to approximately 70 investors.

The RCMP launched a criminal investigation into the companies in February 2012.

David Burns Holden, 52, of Richmond Hill, Ont.; Rose (Rosa) Rita Holden, 57, of Richmond Hill, Ont.; Anthony Mario Cosentino, 67, of Toronto; Andrew Gaudet, 43, of Oakville, Ont.; and Edmond Chin Ho So, 37, of Toronto have each been charged with one count of fraud over $5,000, money laundering and commission of an offence for criminal organization.

David and Rose Holden also face an additional three bankruptcy and insolvency act charges.