Monroe L. Beachy was sentenced to 6 ½ years in prison for operating a scheme in which he defrauded 2,700 businesses and people, many of them Amish, out of more than $16.8 million, federal officials announced today.
Beachy, 78, of Sugarcreek, Ohio, pleaded guilty last year to one count of mail fraud before U.S. District Judge Benita Pearson.
“This was fraud on a massive scale,” said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. “This defendant took advantage of people’s trust in him and squandered the life savings of hundreds upon hundreds of families.”
Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Cleveland office, said, “Thousands of investors entrusted their life savings to the integrity of Mr. Beachy’s investment business. Unfortunately, he violated this trust over and over again.”
Beginning in or about 1990 and continuing through in or about June 2010, Beachy represented to investors that money deposited with his investment company, A&M Investments, would be safe and would secure a positive rate of return.
He specifically represented to investors that A&M would invest in Ginnie Mae Bond Funds, a type of mortgage-backed security issued by the Government National Mortgage Association and guaranteed by the full faith and credit of the United States government, according to court documents.
Beachy did not invest the money as represented, and as such, approximately 2,698 people and entities were defrauded with a combined loss in excess of approximately $16.8 million.
Among the investors that lost money was the Amish Helping Fund, which was established to assist members of the Amish community with the purchase of land and buildings, among other things, according to court documents.
The case resulted from an investigation conducted by the United States Postal Service, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was handled by Assistant United States Attorney Linda H. Barr.