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Aledo Times Record - Aledo, IL
  • Macomb man defrauded investors of millions, pleads guilty

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  • A Macomb man faces two decades behind bars for defrauding investors out of millions of dollars over a six-year period.
    Ronald R. Kelly pleaded guilty Monday in U.S. District Court in Peoria to wire fraud and to filing a false tax return. Several other counts, including additional wire fraud, money laundering and false tax return counts, are expected to be dismissed when he is sentenced Dec. 9 by Senior U.S. District Judge Joe B. McDade.
    Until then, Kelly remains free on bond.
    The numbers involved in the fraud scheme are staggering. Assistant U.S. Attorney Darilynn Knauss told McDade that Kelly underreported more than $1 million in income from 2006 to 2008 when he filed his tax returns. And the amount of money involved in the investment scheme topped $4 million.
    The May 17, 2012, indictment alleges Kelly started multiple companies, including Mustang Generators Inc., Mustang Wireless Group, 21st Global Corp. and 21st Sentry Technologies. Kelly, the indictment states, would solicit people to invest money by promising large returns, telling them the firms were successful or about to go public.
    The claims were untrue, the indictment stated.
    “Even though the companies were worthless, Kelly lulled investors into believing that the investments were still good and continued to represent that the companies were just about to go public,” the indictment states.
    To that end, the indictment alleges he would send out phony stock certificates, newsletters and make false statements about the firms and their future.
    The indictment alleges that instead of investing the money, Kelly put the money into his personal account.

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