SAN DIEGO (AP) - A Southern California man has pleaded guilty to running a $5 million Ponzi scheme that carries up to a 20-year prison sentence.
John Clement of Encinitas pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of wire fraud and was set to be sentenced Dec. 20.
The 65-year-old is accused of falsely promising 1½ to 2 percent returns every month for his hedge fund investors with little or no risk.
The North County Times reported Friday that Clement was using money he received from new investors to pay off older ones. At least 22 people fell for the scam.
In May, a judge froze Clement's assets after federal investigators found evidence his Ponzi scheme was collapsing.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.
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