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Judge unseals wire fraud indictment

The recent unsealing of an indictment shines a little more light on the charges concerning a suspected Ponzi scheme. A suspect accused of committing wire fraud is also facing additional charges of three counts of identity theft. While he faces criminal charges in Texas, he is also the defendant of a civil suit in another state.

Police claim that at least one person in Texas was a victim of an investment fraud scheme that could have netted millions. The man accused of engaging in the fraudulent behavior allegedly attempted to sell royalties and investments from the oil and gas industry that he did not actually own. Some of the assignments that he supposedly tried to sell were actually owned by people in other states. He apparently also claimed that he had successfully invested in multiple businesses in the oil industry.

According to the indictment, a conviction of the fraud count alone could result in 20 years behind bars. If convicted on all three counts of identity theft, an extra six years could be added to that. However, he has yet to be arraigned as the court waits for him to retain counsel.

It is unclear what damages the alleged victim claims to have suffered financially, although the out-of-state civil claim that the defendant is facing is seeking $1.7 million. However, any ongoing civil action against the defendant is no indication of any related criminal activity or guilt. Though wire fraud charges are taken quite seriously in Texas, most defendants can achieve the most favorable outcome possible by taking careful review of their charges alongside their counsel. This process can provide insight into whether fighting the charges would be most appropriate or if a better outcome could be garnered through a plea deal

Source: orlandosentinel.com, "Indictment unsealed in Texas for Winter Park's Justin Spearman", Paul Brinkmann, July 20, 2015

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