DETROIT – On Tuesday, Dearborn resident Ali Rameh Bazzi pleaded guilty to wire fraud and money laundering in connection with a $500,000 investment fraud scheme, according to acting United States Attorney, Saima S. Mohsin.
Bazzi, 26, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud in the scheme to defraud investors out of $500,000.
He also pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering, the result of financial transactions he engaged in with the fraudulently obtained funds.
According to Mohsin, Bazzi told his victims that he was investing their money in foreign exchange and commodity markets.
“He used their money to line his own pockets, and lied to his victims over and over again in order for the criminal activity to continue. Today’s guilty plea reflects my office’s commitment to hold accountable all those who fleece the public for personal gain,” said Mohsin.
According to the plea agreement, Bazzi owned and operated a purported investment company in Dearborn known as Welther Oaks, LLC.
Using the business name Welther Oaks, Bazzi solicited funds from individuals in various parts of the United States, including Michigan, Illinois and California, purportedly for investments.
According to the plea documents, approximately 30 individuals invested funds with Bazzi over the course of his scheme, which ran from approximately March 2018 through March 2020.
Bazzi diverted most of the investors’ funds to his own personal uses and expenses. According to the plea documents, Bazzi spent investor funds on a sports car, other luxury vehicles and expensive jewelry.
To conceal the scheme, Bazzi provided investors with periodic investment account statements that listed fictitious trading activity and account balances.
The plea agreement also states that Bazzi engaged in financial transactions with the fraudulently obtained funds, including wiring some $28,429 to a business in Nevada for the lease of an exotic sports car.
He is scheduled to be sentenced November 30 at 4 p.m. before United States District Judge David M. Lawson.
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