Earl Jones gets 11 years for $50M fraud

"None of us will ever be the same," said Bevan Jones who, along with his wife Frances Gordon, was fleeced out of $1 million by his brother. Jones said he would never forgive him for what he'd done. Both Jones and his financial-services company have been declared bankrupt. He's been shunned not only by his friends and relatives, but his wife Maxine has also filed for divorce.

http://www.cbc.ca
February 15, 2010

Earl Jones gets 11 years for $50M fraud
Former Montreal financial adviser can 'rot in hell,' says his brother

EarlJonesSentencing.jpg

Financial adviser Earl Jones shown last summer after being granted bail. (Graham Hughes/Canadian Press)

Former Montreal financial adviser Earl Jones was sentenced to 11 years in prison on Monday, after pleading guilty to two fraud charges related to his $50-million Ponzi scheme.

At least 100 people, many of them victims, crowded into the Montreal courthouse for his sentencing and spared no words after the half-hour hearing.

"He can rot in hell," said Bevan Jones of his brother, who bilked him and nearly 150 other investors of their personal savings with a massive Ponzi scheme that spanned more than 20 years.

Crown prosecutors and Jones's lawyer jointly recommended a sentence of 11 years, which Judge Hélène Morin handed down.

"The accused not only robbed the victims of their money, he robbed them of their freedom and self-esteem and of a decent life they expected in their retirement," Morin said in her comments before delivering the sentence.

"All of them trusted him. For many, this word has no meaning anymore. He is responsible for irrevocable changes in all the victims' lives and this has left them all humiliated."

BevanJones.jpg

'None of us will ever be the same.'—Bevan Jones, Earl Jones's brother

Jones never invested a cent of the money he collected from his former clients, the Quebec court heard during the criminal proceedings against him.

The $50-million swindle cost many people their life savings and none of the money has been recovered.

Many victims are pleased at how quickly the case worked its way through the Quebec legal system, CBC reporter Justin Hayward said.

The victims wanted to see Jones severely punished, said Christiane Jackson, who lost more than $1,000,000 of her family money to the Montreal adviser.

"I don't want him to be out on the street starting again his Ponzi scheme, which he is very capable of because he realized how easy it was."

Victims want to sue bank for damages
So many of Jones' victims and their loved ones were in attendance Monday that courthouse officials needed a second room for the overflow crowd.

Some of the victims included Jones's own relatives, who are no longer speaking to him.

"None of us will ever be the same," said Bevan Jones who, along with his wife Frances Gordon, was fleeced out of $1 million by his brother. Jones said he would never forgive him for what he'd done.

Both Jones and his financial-services company have been declared bankrupt. He's been shunned not only by his friends and relatives, but his wife Maxine has also filed for divorce.

The provincial police and a bankruptcy trustee spent months going over the books and were able to agree on a conservative estimate of about $51.3 million taken between 1982 and 2009. But it's unclear exactly how many people lost money to the scam over the decades.

The victims announced earlier this month that they will seek the right to sue a branch of the Royal Bank of Canada for allegedly allowing Jones to carry out his crimes, by turning a blind eye to his dubious accounting and business practices.

None of the claims against the Royal Bank have been proven in court and a judge must still authorize the request for the suit.
With files from The Canadian Press

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/story/2010/02/15/earl-jones-sentenced-ponzi.html?ref=rss

Comments (10 of 414)
1. It seems to me that Earl Jones received a sentence that was consistent with what Canadian law currently allows. I am sure that those that were fleeced by this man would prefer he occupy a cell for the rest of his natural life as is the case for Bernie Madoff in the USA. I don't know whether Jones was able to hide some of his ill gotten gains but if he did he might be able to take up a confortable lifestyle if he is released after serving the obligatory 22 months of incarceration.

2. I think it is a crime he only got 11 years. Imagine if the average Joe robbed a bank for say $1,000.00. He would get a 5 year sentence. Crime does pay in Canada.

3. Show me the money! Where exactly is the $50 million?

This guy truly is disgraceful. And I think the RBC bears some responsibility for what happened. The bank should be sued!

4. He'll be out on parole in less than two years. As the article says, it's unclear exactly how many people lost money to the scam over the decades. How about those who made money from this scam? Get a divorce, family and friends to publicly denounce you and, bingo you'll be living the high life again in no time thanks to Canadian justice. All part of the plan, right Mr. Jones?

5. A sentence of 20 years hard labour with zero chance of parole would have been too good for jones. A sentence of 11 years is nothing compared to the crimes the psychopath committed on people for more than 20 years. Here was a chance for the court to make an example of this piece of crap.. but instead they allow what amounts to a plea bargain to occur as to avoid a costly trial and to lessen the sentence handed down. Absolutely sends all the wrong signals. Our justice system is broken where these sorts of crimes are concerned.
I'm sure jones will be out in 7 years or less on "compassionate grounds" due to some illness or whatever. We'll read about in a small footnote piece on page 6 of our local papers.

6. Once again the courts prove that white collar crimes are treated like a joke in Canada!

He gets 11 years and will be out in one or two years?

Liberal bleeding heart justice system!

7. This guy should get life,or one year for every 1 million he took. Then the message would be sent. I would spend 11 year in prison for 50 million how about you.

8. OUr judicial system is broken. Hardly a year per 5 million dollars. Crime does pay well. Maybe we should pay our judges even more money - that way they can actuaqlly feel proud of their hard work !! Better still why don't we put our judges into some stinking jail until they catch the idea that we need for some severe time for all crimes. Screw the bleeding hearts and the lawyers, they have their hands in your money pocket money too.

9. madame morticia…I thought it read '11 YEARS'. Look how old he is…think doing time at his age will be easy? No it won't, he more than likely will end up dying in there. As lenient and completely foolish canada can be on having inmates serve their actual sentences… I suspect he won't be getting paroled any time soon. Even if he did 3-5 yrs. it will be hell for him no matter what face he tries to put on.

10. You know…. It helps if you think of it as 'just money' —

Vast sums of it, irretrievably flushed down the 'Toilet of Opportunity' … and hopelessly depriving you of your fondest retirement dreams forever… as he sits in jail for the next 3 1/2 years, essentially having made several millions of dollars per year at your expense of a few mere buckets of sweated blooded.

But, no fatalist, I.
If not for his tireless efforts, we might well be wasting away on some tropical island sipping on a salted Margarita as we clog our arteries with copios amounts of fine food and go to an earlier grave with a smile.

So, let's all 'Raise a Glass' to Mr. Fonzi, — well, ok, I no longer have a glass… Let's all raise a 'Tupperware Tumbler' to Mr. Fonzi… and elect him to the Order of Canada for teaching us all an invaluable lesson in how to be more gullible.

From now on, — no more good food and vacation homes for me.
No sir-ree, Bob.
From now on, it's baloney steak and cheeze puffs and a tall tumbler of grape Kool-Aid (sans costly sugar). — I have EARNED this purple moustach, Baby!!

*whew - Now, where did I put that bus schedule?…. No more personal gas-guzzling comfort vehicles for me… no sir…


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