Hall of famer John Elway $15 million Poorer from Ponzi Scheme
Elway, who has diversified business holdings including a large Toyota auto dealership invested $15 million last March with Colorado hedge-fund manager Sean Mueller who was charged this week in an alleged Ponzi scheme.
Mueller, 42, turned himself in this week to authorities a day after being charged by prosecutors with racketeering, securities fraud and theft in a scheme said to have bilked tens of millions of dollars out of investors.
Elway and business partner Mitchell Pierce said in a motion filed Tuesday they met with Mueller in Denver on Feb. 22 to discuss an investment with his company, Mueller Capital Management. In March, the Hall of Famer and and Pierce transferred funds to Mueller to be held in escrow until they agreed on where to invest the money, the men said in the filing. On March 30, Mueller advised them he was still setting up managed accounts in their names, they said.
About 65 people invested roughly $71 million since 2000 with Mueller Capital Management, according to an affidavit filed by the Denver district attorney's office. Mueller had less than $9.5million in cash and investments in April and liabilities to investors of $45million, said Colorado Division of Securities investigator Richard Rogers in the affidavit.
In their filing, Elway and Pierce ask the court to put their claim ahead of the others so that they may recapture their investment first. They said Mueller agreed to put their money in a trust and not mingle it with other investors' funds. That, of course, did not happen.