Many people make money on various investments. In the vast majority of cases, this is an ordinary thing to do. Sometimes, investments work out, and at other times, they do not yield the profit expected and may even be a total wash.
While it is unfortunate when people lose money on their investments, particularly as they approach retirement age, a bad investment does not necessarily mean anyone did anything wrong or criminal.
Investment fraud, however, is another matter altogether. Investment fraud is actually a form of embezzlement, since the point of the scheme from the start is to get money from a would-be investor without really giving anything in return. In a true fraud, the perpetrator makes money while the investor is intentionally left holding the bag of a bad or even worthless product.
Advance fee fraud is one common type of investment fraud. Usually, it involves pitching a loan with very favorable terms or, as another example, some supposedly hot stock or other securities, like bonds and the like.
In exchange, the person will pay the tipster an advance fee to make all the arrangements, only to find out later that the hot financial tip they were offered really was not that great, assuming it materializes at all.
It is important for Cincinnati residents to remember, though, that those who help others with investments or procuring a loan, provided they have authority to do so, are entitled to compensation for their services, even in advance. The mere fact that an investment performs poorly, or even fails, does not mean the person who recommended the investment committed a crime.
Someone accused of advance fee fraud or other types of investment fraud should consider speaking with an experienced defense attorney.