Three Colorado Springs men are arrested for allegedly scamming hundreds of people out of millions of dollars and now alleged victims are sharing their stories.
Alan Bird, David Newton and Douglas Scott face multiple counts of theft and fraud for an alleged hedge fund scheme. They posted bond and are currently out of jail.
Alleged victims share their stories, hoping to remind people that if something seems to good to be true, it probably is.
Patrick Dow works for a non-profit Christian agency. He says long-time family acquaintance, Alan Bird, offered him a steal of a deal. An investment into a hedge fund. Dow said, "The potential returns were alluring and attractive. The money guaranteed to us was great thing.”
Like Patrick, Larry Douglas said he was offered the same sales pitch, but from another man, Douglas Scott, who also happened to be the former pastor of his church. Larry said he ended up losing hundreds of thousands of dollars. “I put a little more in, and before you know it, you’ve put in a lot."
The three suspects in this fraud case were allegedly worked together. The Attorney General's office said they have at least 350 victims and collected 7.5 million dollars.
Patrick Dow says his non-profit agency lost a huge chunk of money because of all of this. “Hindsight is 20/20, there were red flags along the way."
Both Larry and Patrick don't know each other, but they say the one thing they share in common is a hard lesson learned. "You get burned once, shame on you. Burned twice, well, that will never happen again," Dow said.
The three men will have their first court appearance next week. There is the possibility that many of the alleged victims get 15-30% of their money back.
Here are some tips before investing:
Make sure you fully understand what you're investing in and read the fine print.
Don't believe everything you hear.
Don't put all your money into one investment.