Watchdog Blog

Dan Froomkin: Ponzis, Ponzis, Everywhere?

Posted at 6:09 pm, April 25th, 2010
Dan Froomkin Mug

In the course of researching a story on the role of fraud in the financial crisis, I ended up speaking to James D. Ratley, who is the president of an organization called the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.

He talks to reporters a lot, he says, and he had a complaint. “We see a lot of missed opportunities.”

There was a particular flurry of media calls back when the the news first broke that Bernard Madoff had been running the biggest Ponzi scheme in history.

Radley said he spent a lot of time “trying to convince these reporters that there were thousands of other Ponzi schemes going on” – including right in their backyards.

“If you Google HYIP — high yield investment programs — you’ll come up with over a million hits. [More than 2.3 million, in fact.] A large number of those are Ponzi schemes,” he said.

So start Googling!

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