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Post date: February 14 2001

Man Who Posed As Heir To Trust Fund Will Be Sentenced To 5-15 Years For Investment Scam

Attorney General Spitzer today announced that a Pelham man has pleaded guilty to four felony counts for orchestrating a multi-million dollar investment scam. Luigi Alexander, 55, will receive a 5-15 year prison term when he is sentenced next month in Westchester County Court by Judge Kenneth Lange.

Alexander, who told investors he was a the sole heir and chief operating officer of the multi-billion dollar D'Ellesandr'O Family Trust fund, pleaded guilty to three counts of Grand Larceny in the Second Degree and one count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree. In addition to the prison term, Alexander's plea agreement included stipulations requiring him to forfeit $300,000 he has on deposit at a local bank.

"The defendant's claims about being the heir to a trust fund, promises of a 16% return for investors, and his background as a doctor were all just the lies of a con man," said Spitzer "This case should serve as a warning to all investors - if something sounds to good to be true, it almost always is."

Alexander told prospective investors that the D'Ellasandr'O family trust was more than a hundred years old and that the Vatican was one of the original large investors. He stated that the trust was so rich in assets that it needed to incur debt to offset taxes. Alexander sold promissory notes at a guaranteed rate of return of 16.88% and ensured investors that their principal was safe. Alexander told one investor who lost more than $700,000, that his money would remain in an escrow account. However, bank records seized from Alexander's Larchmont office showed that shortly after receiving the investor's funds, Alexander wired a large portion of the money to a bank in St. Lucia.

In the course of the investigation, Spitzer's office found that the promissory notes were worthless and that the various business ventures touted in Alexander's investment brochures were non-existent. Alexander also used a sophisticated Internet Web Site to swindle investors.

The case was handled for Attorney General Spitzer by Assistant Attorneys General Scott Andersen and Rebecca Mullane of the Securities Prosecution Unit.