Levi David Lindemann, a Minnesota investment advisor, received a six-year prison sentence for stealing from clients and operating a Ponzi scheme, according to the Minnesota Department of Commerce. Lindemann was sentenced to 74 months imprisonment by a U.S. District Court, having pleaded guilty earlier this year to federal mail fraud and money-laundering charges. He was the owner and operator of Gershwin Financial Inc., which did business as Alternative Wealth solutions, from 2009 to 2014.

“Lindemann abused his position of trust as a financial adviser to steal from his clients, including the elderly,” Mike Rothman, Minnesota’s commerce commissioner, said. “Lindemann defrauded his victims by promising to put their money in legitimate, safe investments when he actually used the funds to pay for personal expenses and Ponzi-type payments to other clients to cover up and continue his fraud.”

According to Levi David Lindemann’s guilty plea, he solicited funds from roughly 50 investors and said he would “use the invested funds to buy secured notes or other legitimate investment vehicles,” the Minnesota announcement said.

However, Lindemann used investors’ money to pay personal expenses, such as the purchase of a sport utility vehicle, and make payments of promised returns to other investors. He tried to conceal the fraud by creating counterfeit secured notes as proof of clients’ investments, according to the announcement.

In April, the Securities and Exchange Commission permanently barred Mr. Lindemann from the industry, according to his BrokerCheck report.

If you or someone you know has lost money as a result of an investment or Ponzi scheme, please contact Richard Frankowski at 888-741-7503 to discuss your potential legal remedies or complete the contact form.