Three-Time Ponzi Schemer Gets 10-Year Prison Sentence

A Utah man holding the dubious distinction of having been convicted of three separate Ponzi schemes over a fifteen-year span will spend the next ten years in federal prison.  Wayne Ogden, 49, received his sentence from United States District Judge Clark Waddoups after a federal jury convicted him of running a $4.8 million Ponzi scheme.  While facing trial on those charges, Ogden was subsequently indicted in 2011 for a $3.5 million Ponzi scheme, to which he is expected to plead guilty and receive a 10-year sentence to be served concurrently.  Ogden has also been ordered to pay more than $8 million to investors.  

Ogden was originally indicted in December 2007 for running a real estate Ponzi scheme in Kiowa, Colorado, where investors were promised returns as high as 100% from the development of a 360-acre parcel of land.  While awaiting trial on those charges, Ogden was charged with concocting a separate Ponzi scheme that solicited underwater homeowners to provide assistance with refinancing and restructuring mortgages.  Ogden's company, Paradigm Acceptance LLC ("Paradigm"), promised short-term returns ranging from 20% to 100%, assuring investors their money was secured by property.  In total, Paradigm raised more than $29 million from investors.

However, each venture was nothing more than an elaborate Ponzi scheme where new investor funds were used to pay older investors in classic Ponzi fashion.  Of the $29 million Ogden raised from Paradigm investors, nearly $23 million was paid back to older investors, and nearly $2 million was paid in salaries to Ogden and his brother.  

At the time Ogden began soliciting investors for his first scheme, he was on parole after he was jailed for a $7 million Ponzi scheme he operated from 1995 to 1997.  Despite being sentence to two consecutive 15-year terms, Ogden was paroled after serving just 28 months.  

Ogden must report to the U.S. Bureau of Prison by September 10, 2013 to begin serving his sentence.