Sentence a Bit More Than One Year per Million for Gambling Ponzi Schemer

A press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office:


CHICAGO ― A former investment adviser was sentenced to 3½ years in federal prison for fraudulently obtaining approximately $4 million from more than 30 victims and misusing the money to make Ponzi-type payments to

  • investors
  • pay personal expenses
  • personal gambling

resulting in a loss of just over $3 million.

The defendant, OSCAR DONALD OVERBEY, JR., was a financial adviser at two north suburban locations for Ameriprise Financial, Inc., who engaged in a fraudulent financing scheme between approximately 1996 and 2007.

Overbey, 47, of Country Club Hills and formerly of Evanston, was ordered today to pay $3,090,833 in restitution by U.S. District Judge Gary S. Feinerman, who imposed the sentence yesterday in Federal Court. Overbey was ordered to begin serving his 42-month sentence on Jan. 12, 2015.

Following his sentence, the judge ordered Overbey to be placed on supervised release for three years and prohibited him from gambling or visiting casinos or racetracks during that time.

Overbey was indicted in 2012 and pleaded guilty to wire fraud last February.

Ponzi LogoAccording to court documents, among Overbey’s victims were two university workers and their two daughters. He convinced them to invest $150,000 in a purported short-term, government-backed investment paying 10 percent interest. The victims obtained funds from refinancing their home and from a home equity line of credit to make the investment. Instead of investing the funds, Overbey misappropriated the entire amount to pay personal expenses and to make more than 10 Ponzi-type payments to other victims.

“The victims placed their trust in [Overbey], but never had a chance. [Overbey] abused that trust and misused his education and skills as an investment advisor to benefit himself and to keep his scheme going,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward Kohler argued at sentencing.

The sentence was announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and Antonio Gómez, Inspector-in-Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Chicago. The Illinois Securities Department cooperated with the investigation.

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