Travis E. Correll, 31, of Atlanta also was ordered by U.S. District Judge Orinda D. Evans to pay $29 million in restitution. Correll pleaded guilty to the charges last Nov. 30.
The amounts of money we are seeing in some of these investment schemes is remarkable," said U.S. Attorney David E. Nahmias. "This defendant is like many who use a Ponzi scheme to scam tens of millions from investors. Even though this defendant is going to federal prison, some of the money he stole is simply gone and probably will never be recovered."
According to Nahmias, from late 2001 to December 2005, Correll operated an investment program known as "Horizon Establishment," which offered high monthly rates of return to investors.
Almost from the beginning, Correll operated Horizon as a Ponzi scheme, using investment money received from later investors to pay substantial returns to some of the early investors, according to Nahmias.
Federal investigators estimate that he recirculated approximately $71 million to investors, resulting in losses of approximately $29 million.
Correll resigned as an SEC basketball official in December 2005 after the Securities and Exchange Commission filed suit in Texas alleging Correll and others sold interests in purported foreign and international bank deposit programs promising risk-free returns of 4 percent to 12 percent. The deposit program did not exist, prosecutors said