OKLAHOMA CITY (CN) – A federal judge sentenced a 48-year-old Oklahoman to nearly 22 years in federal prison for a Ponzi scheme that took investors for more than $4.5 million.
Brian William McKye, 48, of Bethany, Okla., was sentenced Tuesday to 262 months in federal prison and ordered to pay more than $4.5 million in restitution, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement.
A federal jury convicted him in November of securities fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering after a three-day trial.
McKye did business as Global West Funding Ltd. Co., Global West Financial LLC, Global West Financial LLC, Sure Lock Financial LLC, Sure Lock Loans LLC, and The Wave-Goldmade Ltd.
Prosecutors said McKye used the businesses to market investment contracts that guaranteed monthly returns of 6.5 percent to 20 percent, for 6 to 60 months. Investors were told they had “100 percent total control” of their money and that the investments were secured by risk-free real estate notes.
“However, McKye was not a registered investment adviser or broker-dealer in the State of Oklahoma and he used the money he received from investors to pay his own personal and business expenses and some limited returns to investors to keep the scheme ongoing,” prosecutors said. “Through this Ponzi scheme, McKye defrauded 115 victim-investors out of over $4.5 million.”
The Oklahoma Department of Securities shut the businesses down in the spring of 2009.