Macomb County man who ran Ponzi scheme and defrauded seniors faces new charges

Around $3 million stolen in scheme

MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. – The criminal case against former Macomb County financial advisor, Ernie Julius Romer III continues. 

Romer left behind vast financial damage. He is accused of defrauding senior citizens.

The criminal case against Romer continued to unfold in court today. 

Romer ended up facing yet one more charge and giving the judge a plea.  

The 57-year-old disgraced financial advisor of Shelby Township has spent the last 13 months in the Macomb County Jail.

He cannot afford to pay the million dollar bond a judge placed on him after being charged with stealing investor money and running a Ponzi scheme. Around $3 million was taken in total.

It is quite likely Romer will never get out of jail after making a 13th plea this afternoon.  

Romer didn't want to plead guilty because he's facing numerous civil lawsuits. 
But a judge views a no contest plea the same as a guilty plea when it comes to sentencing.

He could get 20 years for this latest case alone. 

The victims are 71-year-old industrial mechanic Joel Wronski of Clinton Township and his wife who lost more than a quarter of a million dollars to Romer. 

The couple worked hard and saved their entire lives to build dream homes in retirement. 

"My wife and I both, we deprived our kids and I worked all kinds of hours. I worked seven days, 12 hours," said Wronski.    

They didn't lose everything to Romer, but it was enough to lose an awful lot of sleep and it forced them to put their retirement plans on hold. 

"I'm not sure what they are gonna give him. I don't think 20 years is enough for all the pain and suffering all those 13 people went through," said Wronski. 

The Securities and Exchange Commission is involved in the case. The State of Michigan revoked Romer's license.

He'll be back in court Dec. 5 for sentencing.

About the Authors: