Rancho Santa Fe man sentenced to nine years for investment scam
A Rancho Santa Fe man who recruited investors by promising returns of up to 6 percent per week on investments into his company was sentenced on Monday to more than nine years in federal prison.
Richard M. Hersch, 72, pleaded guilty last year to mail fraud and conspiracy to structure financial transactions.
U.S. District Judge John A. Houston sentenced Hersch to 110 months in custody and ordered the defendant to pay at least $9.2 million in restitution to investors defrauded in the scheme.
“Today’s sentencing should remind the public of the financial perils associated with high-yield investment fraud scams,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Keith Slotter. “The FBI will continue to aggressively investigate those individuals that engage in fraudulent investment practices that victimize the American public and undermine our economy.”
As part of his guilty plea, Hersch admitted that he told investors that All States ATM Inc. had contracts with major horse racing tracks in California and around the country to operated Automated Teller Machines on the “back side” of the racetrack, an area not accessible to the general public and used by employees, horse owners and trainers.
Hersch also claimed that the contracts his company had with the racetracks allowed him to operate a check-cashing or loan service on the back side of the track for the exclusive use of those with access to the area, according to the plea agreement.
According to prosecutors, the racetracks identified by Hersch reported having no contracts with him or his company to provide financial services of any kind.
Based on the false representations, Hersch and others recruited more than 150 investors to invest approximately $25 million in All States ATM, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Orabona.
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