Christopher Ciccone, a New Jersey businessman who was previously convicted of wire fraud and filing a false tax return, was arrested for defrauding investors of more than one million dollars.
Ciccone lured prospective investors with the notion that his company was reserving blocks of rooms at luxury hotels, which would later be resold at a profit.
He promised investors returns between 15 and 50 percent within one to six months. His scheme generated 1.5 million dollars from 22 investors.
In reality, Ciccone never booked any hotel rooms. He used $120,000 of the investors’ money to pay early investors and to fund a lavish lifestyle. He spent $54,000 on a BMW, $235,000 on clothes, wine and other personal items and made more than $216,000 in cash withdrawals.
Ciccone failed to include this money on his tax returns, and faces up to 20 years in prison and a 5 million dollar fine.