Ken Fisher's investment book can help you avoid financial fraud

Fisher Investments Executive Chairman Ken Fisher believes investment fraud is more prevalent than many people realize—a Bernie Madoff or Allen Stanford isn't unique. In fact, Ken Fisher profiled Charles Ponzi in his 1991 book, 100 Minds that Made the Market (re-released from Wiley under the Fisher Investment Series in 2007.)

There are many, many investment frauds committed across the country (and abroad as well). According to Ken Fisher, investment frauds vary in size and nature, but they inevitably always have a rat behind them and victims at their core. Yet, it's not so easy to spot investment fraud rats just by looking at them—personalities and company operations may appear legitimate on the surface. That's why Ken Fisher encourages investors to do their due diligence on the investment managers they are considering hiring.

So who are some of the investment fraud rats today? It's not hard to find them in headlines when you do a quick scan. And Ken Fisher's book, How to Smell a Rat, can give you the tools to help spot these investment scam artists before it's too late. Here are profiles of some famous and not so famous investment fraudsters and alleged fraudsters (as of 10/15/10).

Bernard Madoff Name: Bernard Madoff
Location: New York
Stolen: $65 billion
Crime: Massive Ponzi Scheme, securities fraud, investment advisor fraud
Story: Click here
Joseph S. Forte Name: Joseph S. Forte
Location: Pennsylvania
Stolen: $80 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme, wire, mail and bank fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here
Arthur Nadel Name: Arthur Nadel
Location: Florida
Stolen: $168 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme, securities and wire fraud
Story: Click here
Allen Stanford Name: Allen Stanford
Location: Texas
Allegedly Stolen: $9 billion
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme, fraud, conspiracy, obstruction
Story: Click here
Shawn Moore Name: Shawn Moore
Location: Utah
Allegedly Stolen: $180 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme, real estate investment scam
Story: Click here
Daren Palmer

Name: Daren Palmer
Location: Idaho
Allegedly Stolen: $68 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme, securities and wire fraud
Story: Click here

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Edward T. Stein

Name: Edward T. Stein
Location: New York
Stolen: $30 million
Crime: Securities and wire fraud
Story: Click here

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Nicholas Cosmo Name: Nicholas Cosmo
Location: New York
Allegedly Stolen: $400 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here
David Hernandez

Name: David Hernandez
Location: Illinois
Allegedly Stolen: $11 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

Robert C. Brown

Name: Robert C. Brown
Location: California
Allegedly Stolen: $20 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme, wire, mail and bank fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here

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Paul Melbye, Brendan Coughlin, Henry Harrison

Names: Paul Melbye, Brendan Coughlin, Henry Harrison
Location: Texas
Allegedly Stolen: $485 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

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Bertram Earl Jones Name: Bertram Earl Jones
Location: Quebec, Canada
Allegedly Stolen: C$75 million ($71.9 million)
Alleged Crime: Fraud and theft
Story: Click here
Barry Tannenbaum Name: Barry Tannenbaum
Location: South Africa
Allegedly Stolen: $12.5 billion rand ($1.7 billion)
Alleged Crime: Ponzi scheme, investment fraud
Story: Click here
Marc Dreier Name: Marc Dreier
Location: New York
Stolen: $700 million
Crime: Conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud, securities fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here
Joel Steinger

Name: Joel Steinger
Location: Florida
Allegedly Stolen: $1.25 billion
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

Anthony Demasi

Name: Anthony Demasi
Location: Illinois
Stolen: $4.7 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

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Anthony Vassallo Name: Anthony Vassallo
Location: California
Allegedly Stolen: $40 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here
James Ossie

Name: James Ossie
Location: Georgia
Stolen: $25 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme, wire fraud
Story: Click here

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Michael Marshall and Gregory Russell Name: Michael Marshall and Gregory Russell
Location: Colorado
Allegedly Stolen: $9.7million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here
Corey Ribotsky Name: Corey Ribotsky
Location: New York
Allegedly Stolen: $770 million
Alleged Crime: Investment fraud
Story: Click here
Gordon Grigg

Name: Gordon Grigg
Location: Tennessee
Stolen: $10.9 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

Thomas Lester Irby II

Name: Thomas Lester Irby II
Location: Texas
Allegedly Stolen: $3.1 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

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Tamara Lanz Moon

Name: Tamara Lanz Moon
Location: California
Allegedly Stolen: $850,000
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

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Philip Barry Name: Philip Barry
Location: New York
Allegedly Stolen: $40 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here
Brice Carrington Name: Brice Carrington
Location: California
Stolen: $4 million
Crime: Wire fraud, tax evasion
Story: Click here
Frank Bluestein

Name: Frank Bluestein
Location: Michigan
Allegedly Stolen: $250 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

Richard Piccoli

Name: Richard Piccoli
Location: New York
Stolen: $20+ million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme, mail fraud, tax violation
Story: Click here

Ronnie Eugene Bass Jr., Abner Alabre, Brian Taglieri

Name: Michael J. Muzio, Ronnie Eugene Bass Jr., Abner Alabre, Brian Taglieri
Location: Florida
Stolen: $14 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme, fraud
Story: Click here

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Matthew Weitzman

Name: Matthew Weitzman
Location: New York
Stolen: $7 million
Crime: Investment fraud, securities fraud, wire fraud
Story: Click here

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Michael Riolo

Name: Michael Riolo
Location: Florida
Stolen: $44 million
Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

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Tom Petters Name: Tom Petters
Location: Minnesota
Stolen: $3.65 billion
Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here
Kenneth Kenitzer Name: Kenneth Kenitzer
Location: California
Allegedly Stolen: $40 million
Alleged Crime: Mail fraud and money laundering
Story: Click here
Donald Chouinard

Name: Donald Chouinard
Location: Montana
Allegedly Stolen: $1.5 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

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Dennis Bolze

Name: Dennis Bolze
Location: Tennessee
Stolen: $21 million
Crime: Ponzi scheme, wire fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here

Paul Knight

Name: Paul Knight
Location: Tennessee
Stolen: $33 million
Crime: Ponzi scheme, conspiracy, fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here

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Won Sok Lee

Name: Won Sok Lee
Location: Florida
Stolen: $194 million
Crime: Ponzi scheme
Story: Click here

William J. Chaucer Jr. Name: William J. Chaucer Jr.
Location: Louisiana
Allegedly Stolen: $11 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here
Stephen Clifford Name: Stephen Clifford
Location: Louisiana
Stolen: $4.3 million
Crime: Fraud
Story: Click here
Richard Elkinson

Name: Richard Elkinson
Location: Massachusetts
Allegedly Stolen: $29 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi scheme, tax fraud, civil fraud
Story: Click here

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Marcia Sladich

Name: Marcia Sladich
Location: New Jersey
Stolen: $15 million
Crime: Ponzi scheme
Story: Click here

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Michael Winans Jr.

Name: Michael Winans Jr.
Location: Michigan
Allegedly Stolen: $11 million
Alleged Crime: Ponzi Scheme
Story: Click here

Nevin Shapiro

Name: Nevin Shapiro
Location: Florida
Stolen: $880 million
Crime: Ponzi scheme, securities fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here

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Ken Starr

Name: Ken Starr
Location: New York
Allegedly Stolen: $30 million
Alleged Crime: Wire fraud, investment advisor fraud, money laundering
Story: Click here

Robert Emmett McDowell

Name: Robert Emmett McDowell
Location: New Jersey
Stolen: $337,000
Crime: Theft by deception, resisting arrest, stalking, and criminal mischief
Story: Click here

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Brion Randall

Name: Brion Randall
Location: Texas
Stolen: $6 million
Crime: Mail fraud, bank fraud
Story: Click here

Travis L Wright

Name: Travis L Wright
Location: Utah
Allegedly Stolen: $145 million
Alleged Crime: Investments fraud
Story: Click here

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Scott Rothstein

Name: Scott Rothstein
Location: New Jersey
Stolen: $1.2 billion
Crime: Ponzi Scheme, wire fraud, mail fraud, racketeering, and money laundering
Story: Click here

Imperia Invest

Name: Imperia Invest
Location: Utah
Allegedly Stolen: $7 million
Alleged Crime: Investment fraud
Story: Click here

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