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Mableton man guilty of running Ponzi scheme | News

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Mableton man guilty of running Ponzi scheme

MABLETON, Ga. -- A Georgia man pleaded guilty in federal court to operating a multi-million dollar foreign exchange market Ponzi scheme.

Stafford S. Maxwell, 46, of Mableton was convicted of 10 counts of wire fraud. He will be sentenced Sept. 2.

Prosecutors said Maxwell, the former owner and CEO of Millennium Capital Exchange, Inc., solicited investments from customers across the United States. He promised his victims high fixed rates of return to be generated from foreign exchange market trading through accounts at a financial firm in Switzerland.

While Maxwell claimed he had a long history of successful forex market trading, and used "stops" and "floors" on trades to ensure any potential losses would be small, he actually had little success executing such trades, lost almost all the money he traded and had no reserve fund to cover losses, prosecutors said.

"Maxwell's claims led to nothing more than common theft, as he used lies and deceit to fleece people of their savings," Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn said in a statement.

Between 2008 and January 2012, potential investors wired more than $1 million to Maxwell, expecting the funds would be traded in the Swiss accounts. Prosecutors said Maxwell used about half of the victims' money to pay dividends to older investors. He spent the other half on his personal expenses.

Maxwell was investigated by the FBI. He was indicted Mar. 17.