Feds: Connecticut investor swindled millions from Chicagoans

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An investment manager from Connecticut who previously worked as director of the Chicago Board Options Exchange has been charged with bilking $13 million over about 17 years from dozens of people, including victims from the Chicago area.

Alvin Wilkinson; a 58-year-old man from Sharon, Connecticut; faces three counts of mail fraud and one of wire fraud , according to a federal indictment released Thursday.

Starting in 1999 and up until last May, Wilkinson touted his experience at the Board Options Exchange in persuading about 30 people to invest $13 million in Chicago Index Partners and Wilkinson Financial Opportunity Fund, both of which he founded and based in Connecticut, federal prosecutors said.

Instead, he used their money for personal expenses, and to pay earlier investors “through Ponzi-type payments,” prosecutors said. Among his alleged victims were former friends and colleagues.

Wilkinson was arrested Wednesday in his home state and will be tried in Chicago. A court date has not yet been set.

If convicted of all four counts of fraud, he could face up to 80 years in prison.

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