The following is an announcement from the office of U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz:
A Wakefield man was convicted yesterday in federal court in connection with a scheme to defraud 125 victims out of more than $380,000.
Jamon Caswell, 34, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and mail fraud. U.S. District Court Judge William G. Young scheduled sentencing for Jan. 8, 2013. Caswell faces up to 20 years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, and a $ 250,000 fine.
Had the case proceeded to trial, the government’s evidence would have proven that between June 2010 to December 2010, Caswell conspired with co-defendants Lawrence Amirto and William Totaro to defraud victims in a business opportunity advance fee scheme involving an entity called Premier Service Group Inc. (PSG). Caswell, Amirto, and Totaro falsely claimed that PSG provided credit repair services to consumers and advertised in publications throughout the United States.
The advertisements offered the sale of independent businesses whereby independent affiliates would purchase geographic territories and would receive leads from PSG for potential credit repair clients within those territories. The affiliates were to contact these leads, describe the services that PSG would provide, sign them up as clients of PSG, and earn commissions. Affiliates were told that representatives at PSG’s home office in Burlington, Massachusetts, provided the actual credit repair services.
PSG never provided any credit repair service. Instead, many of the newly recruited affiliates were immediately given the opportunity to recruit additional affiliates. The new affiliates were thereby diverted from learning that there was no actual credit repair business, while soliciting still more affiliates. The funds collected from new affiliates were used for making payments to other affiliates, for expenses associated with the scheme, or for the personal expenses of Caswell, Amirto, and Totaro.