Monday, February 23, 2009

Victims seek restitution from "Mini-Madoff"

From the Forum West:

Almost one month after the arrest of alleged Long Island con artist Nicholas Cosmo on federal mail fraud charges, local residents who invested in Agape World, Inc. are left wondering where their money went and if they will ever recover any of it.

While Cosmo’s business – which federal authorities say was nothing more than a Ponzi scheme that cheated 1,500 people out of about $370 million – was based on Long Island, it also had an office on Grand Avenue in Maspeth. That’s where many Queens residents went to invest their money in hopes of cashing on large returns.

Cosmo was arrested on January 26 following a FBI investigation, which culminated in raids of Agape’s Hauppauge, Jackson Heights and Maspeth offices. The company had promised investors the chance to cash in returns from bridge loans Agape provided to other individuals and companies. Instead, authorities say that just $10 million of $370 million provided by investors was ever loaned out. The rest is believed to have been squandered by Cosmo, who is being held in federal custody.

As the case slowly moves forward, hundreds of local investors have begun banding together in an effort to recover any of the lost money. “We have two objectives – to get information so that we feel connected to the process, and secondly to give each other hope,” said Dom DiColandrea of West Babylon, who has helped mobilize a group of victims and posts updates on a victim’s blog, agapeworldincvictims.blogspot.com.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

How ironic that his business was named, "Agape" a Greek word for the highest form of love--traditionally associated with Christ.

He gets to make a mockery of his investors and basic human decency with one shot.

I hope that they recover and restore every possible penny and give him a nice long sentence to contemplate his crimes.

Anonymous said...

One of the brokers lives in Maspeth. He has houses, cars and boats. Heard he did very well financially off this ponzi scheme.

I hope people get their money back when they freeze his assets.

Anonymous said...

I was approached with this a year ago and after a minute it was obvious how this was a scam. Lots of people willfully ignored the facts because of greed.

Taxpayer said...

Anonymous said:
"I was approached with this a year ago and after a minute it was obvious how this was a scam. Lots of people willfully ignored the facts because of greed."

All con games are based on greed.

Each grifter sizes up the "mark" for the signs of weakness, stupidity and greed.

Any mark with the right attributes is approached, and, as the grifter planned, bites and waits for the wealth to arrive.

Who cares when the stupid, weak, greedy go broke?

While we're at it, who cares if the stupid, weak, greedy Citigroup goes bankrupt? Or GM or any of the others who lust after your tax dollars go broke.

Failure has a cleansing effect.

Anonymous said...

Many good people are also robbed because they trust friends or neighbors or that nice minister.

It is past time that the flim-flam men were run into jail instead of just having us all laugh at the stupidity of their victims.

Con artists can create appropriate bait for every victim. If you did not fall for it, it wasn't the right bait for you. They'll get you next time.

Anonymous said...

What a nice guy to drag his neighbors and friends into a scam that lost them their life savings.
A man with no concience or morals.
A disgrace for his wife and kids.
Shameful behavior for any human being.
But like most white collar robbing dirtbags, he proabably can rationalize and feel what he did is okay.

Anonymous said...

You must know the guy. You are sooooo right. He has no conscience or morals. People sell their souls to make a buck.

What goes around comes around. It's karma!