Canada, U.S. authorities, combine to probe alleged Alberta Ponzi scheme

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A central Alberta man has been charged in an alleged $10-million Ponzi scheme involving the purchase, sale, and rental of mobile light towers to customers in Canada and the United States.

RCMP say a 20-month investigation looked into allegations that the owner of Red Deer-based Silvertip Energy Inc., sold or rented towers with the same serial number to multiple investors and had also sold or rented units that were never manufactured.

The alleged victims included five individual investors and four or more corporations in Canada and the U.S.

Police seized documents related to investments and electronics from a home north of Red Deer on Dec. 19.

Mounties say their Red Deer financial crimes unit worked closely with the United States Secret Service and the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada, or FINTRAC, throughout the investigation.

Joshua James Tenhove, who is 45, is to appear in a Red Deer courtroom on Jan. 15 on charges that include fraud over $5,000, one count of laundering the proceeds of crime and one of possession of property obtained by crime over $5,000.

Police said the five individual investors lost an estimated $4 million, while the corporations lost more than $6 million.

Read the full story over at Canadian Business.

This story was summarized by Canadian Fraud News Inc.