By Roy Denish
An attorney-at-law was disbarred from the practice of law in Nevada and sentenced to 135 months in federal prison for running an investment scam. He collected more than $9.5 million falsely promising profits through investments in various oil companies and ventures.
Mark Roy Anderson, 57, received the prison sentence this morning from United States District Judge Percy Anderson. Judge Anderson ordered the defendant to pay more than $9.5 million in restitution, representing the total amount of losses from Anderson’s fraudulent scheme.
Judge Anderson stated that “this was nothing more than an elaborate and concerted fraud by a professional conman,” noting that the defendant “had prior convictions…[that] came from a decade-long frenzy of fraudulent activity in the 80s.” Judge Anderson called Mark Roy Anderson a “financial predator with little regard for the law or harm he causes,” concluding that he was “solely motivated by greed.”
Mark Anderson was remanded into custody in April 2011 after, according to Judge Anderson, he “brazenly violated court orders.” He pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of money laundering last July.
Anderson solicited investments from victims and promised their money to be invested in various oil companies and oil-related ventures in Oklahoma and California and substantial returns on their investments. Instead of using investors’ money for oil ventures, he and his then-wife used investors’ funds for living expenses and personal items. Anderson also used investors’ funds to purchase an interest in the now-closed Prego restaurant in Beverly Hills. In total, approximately 14 victims lost more than $9.5 million.
“Mark Roy Anderson used his knowledge of the oil business to bilk investors and clients and to create a smoke-screen around his criminal activities,” United States Attorney André Birotte, Jr. said. “But Mr. Anderson could not outrun the long reach of the law and the collective efforts of federal and local investigators have brought him to justice.”
The case against Anderson is the result of an investigation by the FBI and IRS-Criminal Investigation. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission-Division of Enforcement and the Beverly Hills Police Department provided assistance in the investigation.