Tampa Man Sentenced to Two Years in Fraud Scam

February 22, 2005

A Tampa man has been sentenced on charges he sold phony bonds, claiming the bonds carried a financial guarantee. The bonds were sold to more than 200 people, primarily in the Tampa Bay area. The Florida Office of Financial Regulation announced that Ralph B. Plummer has been sentenced to 24 months in prison to be followed by 24 months of supervised release. He must also pay $7.7 million in restitution to the victims of the scam.

Plummer pled guilty to charges of securities, insurance and mail fraud in September 2003. The charges resulted from Plummer, as president of Financial Capital Company of America, selling secured corporation notes to fund the construction of Christian vacation resorts in Tennessee.

FCCA misrepresented that it had $280 million in assets; however, it had actually rented T-bills and certificates of deposit but had no access to any cash from these vehicles. Plummer was brought in as a result of a joint OFR investigation with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the IRS, the FBI and the US Postal Inspection Service.

Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher said OFR investigators worked on the case in conjunction with a variety of federal agencies.

“We cannot allow those who perpetrate these scams to escape justice,” Gallagher said. Floridians who are lured into these phony investments need to know we will aggressively prosecute those who sold the bogus products.”

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