Webio Founder Gets 16 Years for Ponzi Scheme

Friday, Jan 14, 2011  |  Updated 1:24 PM CDT
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Webio Founder Gets 16 Years for Ponzi Scheme

The former Webio exec who swindled 250-plus investors out of $6.4 million in a Ponzi scheme was sentenced today to 16 years and 8 months in prison.

David J. Hernandez, 50, ran the fraud for two years before it collapsed in June 2009. Hernandez approached more than 300 people to invest $13 million via his business, NextStep Financial Services. He used the funds in part for a highly-publicized Chicago Internet radio venture with Mike North, which also went bust.

Hernandez was arrested last year in a Normal, Ill., hotel room following a failed suicide attempt. 

U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman today called Hernandez a con man and a thief, ordering him to pay restitution of $6.4 million. According to the statement, the victims likely will never be repaid, because Hernandez has no assets.

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