Mexican charged in Ohio in $9.6M investment scheme

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

CLEVELAND (AP) — Federal authorities say a Mexican citizen who lived in the Cleveland area defrauded investors in four states in a $9.6 million scheme over six years and used the money for a lavish lifestyle.

Prosecutors say 27-year-old Oscar Villarreal was indicted Tuesday on 10 counts of wire fraud, seven counts of money laundering and single counts of securities fraud and investment adviser fraud.

They say the former Gates Mills resident is believed to be in Mexico. It's not clear if he has an attorney.

Authorities allege he promoted and sold limited partnership interests in funds to dozens of investors in Ohio, Florida, New Jersey and New York. He's accused of misrepresenting the funds and purported profits and using ill-gotten money for purchases such as a luxury sports car and high-end piano.