Container Ponzi schemes are proliferating around the world. As a court in Munich grapples with one of Germany’s largest post-war fraud schemes involving a local leasor and the swindling of investors to the tune of billions of dollars, a court in Houston, Texas yesterday sentenced a 54-year-old man to seven years and one month in federal prison after pleading guilty to a fraudulent shipping container scheme.
Steven Jones also was ordered to pay more than $8m in restitution. Jones was behind a company called Intermodal Wealth, which offered containers for sale to investors and then to lease them for the investors to clients. Jones promised an annual return of 16%, but prosecutors say the company had few containers and leased none of them. The partners instead spent most of the invested money.
Two other men pleaded guilty to charges and were imprisoned.