A Charlotte man and two others were charged in a $2.5 million fraud scheme that swindled more than 140 people – many of them elderly, according to the U.S. Justice Department.
Robert Leslie Stencil, 59, of Charlotte, Daniel Thomas Broyles Sr., 59, of California; and Kristian Francis Sierp, 45, of Costa Rica, were charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud, five counts of mail fraud and eight counts of wire fraud.
Stencil and Broyles were also charged with two counts of money laundering. Sierp was also charged with four counts of international money laundering.
The charges, in an Aug. 18, indictment, were unsealed Friday.
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The three allegedly sold stock in Niyato Industries Inc., which they marketed as a compressed natural gas car company that Stencil owned and operated from Charlotte. They company, they said, also distributed the compressed natural gas fuel.
Despite the their promises to investors, “Niyato had no facilities, products, patents or plans for an imminent IPO,” the Justice Department said.
The department called the company, “merely a vehicle for inducing investor funds.”
Stencil allegedly kept half of the funds investors provided and sent the rest to his counterparts.
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