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Ponzi swindler sentenced to 41 months in prison, $15 million restitution

November 15, 2010 |  1:34 pm

An admitted swindler was sentenced Monday in San Diego federal court to serve 41 months in prison and pay more than $15 million restitution to more than 200 victims of his Ponzi scheme.

Mohit A. Khanna, 33, ran an investment firm called MAK 1 Enterprises that promised monthly returns of 8% to 50% with no risk, according to prosecutors. Khanna fraudulently told investors that their accounts were insured both by a private insurance company and the Federal Deposit Insurance Co.

In fact, there were no investments and Khanna used some of the money to return dividends to early investors to continue the fiction that the investments were real.

More than $4 million, according to court documents, was used to finance a lavish lifestyle, including luxury vacations and automobiles and expensive homes in Rancho Santa Fe and Rancho Bernardo in the San Diego area, as well as Virginia.

An attorney and an accountant who assisted in the scam have pleaded guilty and await sentencing in December.

Khanna pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and to filing a false federal income tax return. He was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Larry Burns.


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-- Tony Perry in San Diego