HAMILTON, Mich. (WOOD) - A man has been charged with 13 counts of mail fraud in connection with an Internet advertising business.
Jeffrey Folkert ran a small business called iStorm Solutions in Hamilton and defrauded family members, friends and others out of at least $1.5 million between 2005 and 2008.
The Holland resident is accused of falsely representing that he was earning substantial revenue from Google Inc. when Internet users clicked on website advertisements.
Folkert's efforts to earn revenue through Google ads never generated any significant business profit, yet Folkert reported substantial "dividends" on the investments each month.
It is further alleged that, rather than using investors' funds as promised, Folkert deposited the money in his personal bank account, transferred money to an account outside of the United States for his personal use, purchased vehicles, and covered investor withdrawals.
Folkert mailed monthly statements to investors using the United States Postal Service, which gave the false impression that their money was actually invested as promised, earning regular dividends, and that dividends were deposited into investors' accounts.
Each count of mail fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
If you think you are a victim in this case then you need to contact the U.S. Attorney's Office at 616.456.2404, or visit www.justice.gov/usao/miw/programs/victimwitness.html for more information.
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