DOJ Guns For Ringleader In Advance-Fee Scheme

Law360, New York (November 16, 2010, 12:38 PM EST) -- The U.S. Department of Justice has accused a convicted swindler of perpetrating a multimillion-dollar fraud that lures real estate developers with promises of financing from a bogus Greek shipping trust.

The complaint, filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, alleges that Louis Michael Pihakis masterminded an advance-fee scheme that pocketed “proof of funds” payments from developers seeking project financing from a fictitious billion-dollar shipping trust.

“Pihakis and other co-conspirators are committing wire fraud to solicit advance fees from the victim investors,...
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