Published Jan. 15, 2013
Mauldin resident Wallace Lindsey Howell, 61, pleaded guilty to fraud in connection with the Ponzi case that led to a nearly 20-year prison sentence for former Anderson County Councilman Ronnie Gene Wilson.
U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles announced the guilty plea Monday. Howell is awaiting sentencing.
According to prosecutors, Howell received commissions for bringing at least two investors into Wilson’s business, Atlantic Bullion & Coin of Easley.
Wilson was sentenced in November to 235 months in prison and ordered to pay $57 million in restitution for using investors’ money for personal gain, rather than investing it on their behalf. The Ponzi scheme began around 2001 and continued until early 2012, prosecutors said. Authorities said more than 800 people invested around $90 million with Wilson.
Howell received around $9.5 million for his role and $800,000 in rural real estate in Fountain Inn, according to Nettles. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years.