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California Man Sentenced to Almost 6 Years in Jail for $8.7m Cow Manure Ponzi Scheme

California Man Sentenced to Almost 6 Years in Jail for $8.7m Cow Manure Ponzi Scheme

California Man Sentenced to Almost 6 Years in Jail for $8.7m Cow Manure Ponzi Scheme

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of California said this week that a man from California who ran a multimillion-dollar scam in which he said he could turn cow manure into green energy has been sentenced to more than six years in jail.

Court records from March 2014 to December 2019 showed that Ray Brewer, who was 66 at the time, stole more than $8.7 million from clients.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news statement that Brewer tried to trick investors into thinking he could build anaerobic digesters on dairies in several California and Idaho counties. These are big machines that make methane when microorganisms break down biodegradable material. This methane can “then be sold on the open market as green energy,” the report said.

Authorities said that investors in Brewer’s were supposed to get tax breaks and 66% of all net gains as part of the plan.

Brewer gave the investors tours of the dairies where he said he would build the digester machines and “sent them forged lease agreements with the dairy owners,” according to the US Attorney’s Office.

“He also sent the investors changed agreements with banks that made it look like he had borrowed millions of dollars to build the digesters,” the release said.

Authorities say that Brewer sent fake contracts with international companies to investors and showed them fake photos of digesters being built to make it look like he already had money coming in.

The tweet below verifies the news:

Authorities say that after he got money from investors, he moved it to bank accounts in the names of an alias, his family, and other people or things.

Federal officials say that in some cases, Brewer gave the money back that came from “newly received money from other investors who had not given Brewer permission to use their money in this way.”

Authorities say that after his backers found out about his fraud, Brewer took on a new name and moved to Montana.

When Brewer was taken into custody, he tried to trick the police by saying they had the wrong person.

He also told officers stories about his time in the Navy, including one about how he saved several soldiers from fire by stopping the flames with his body so they could escape. Later, he admitted that these stories were lies “meant to gain favor with law enforcement,” according to a news release.

Police say that some of the things Brewer bought with the stolen money were two plots of land with 10 acres or more, a handmade 3,700-square-foot home, and new pickup trucks.

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