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Former Miami Beach Concert Promoter Faces $300M Ponzi Scheme Charges

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A one-time global concert promoter was extradited from Brazil to Miami on Saturday for allegedly committing a $300 million Ponzi scheme.

Jack Utsick, 70, fled the country after his whose empire crumbled under heavy debts and was chased by the federal government. He was designated a fugitive in 2010 after he was charged with nine counts of mail fraud.

Utsick, will appear Monday afternoon before a magistrate judge in Miami federal court.

CBS4's news partner the Miami Herald reported Utsick, formerly of Miami Beach, is accused of diverting millions of dollars from his investors in what authorities have described as a Ponzi scheme to pay for collector cars, a luxury condo, artwork and other personal expenses.

An indictment, filed by prosecutor Jerrob Duffy, accuses Utsick of using "false pretenses" to solicit millions from investors for his "own benefit" between 1996 and 2006. The case, investigated by the FBI, ranks among the larger Ponzi schemes in South Florida.

In 2006 the Securities and Exchange Commission filed a lawsuit accusing Utsick of fraud. Utsick left for Brazil the following year.

The SEC began to investigate Utsick and his partners after the group had a dispute.

Court records show investigators first looked into Utsick's company because they thought he was selling unregistered securities to finance concerts.

Instead, the SEC said they uncovered was a multimillion dollar Ponzi scheme.

In all, the longtime promoter was accused of fleecing some 300 investors out of $293 million, according to the SEC's suit.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed material for this report.)


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