published Sunday, September 1st, 2013

Ponzi scheme figure Jack Brown dies

Jack Brown, the Soddy-Daisy tax preparer who admitted taking friends’ and neighbors’ savings in a long-term, wide-ranging Ponzi scheme, died Friday with his tangled affairs still tied up in bankruptcy court.

Brown had been in ill health for months. In December, he missed a creditors’ meeting in his bankruptcy case because of the health effects of diabetes, an embolic stroke and congestive heart failure, according to a doctor’s note.

His financial affairs became public when more than 30 people filed police reports accusing Brown of losing money they had invested with him. Since then, his business was sold by order of U.S. Bankruptcy Court, and Bankruptcy Court Judge John Cook said Brown or his estate would remain liable for as much as $12 million in debts when the case wound up.

According to newspaper archives, Brown promised investors he could achieve returns as high as 15 percent on their money. He collected nearly $10 million by late 2012, but instead of investing it, he bought lakefront property, large homes and a pink four-wheeler for his daughter.

See Monday’s Times Free Press for complete coverage.

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