A case of major fraud has come to light as two western ranchers, Josh Link and Jed Wood, stand accused of orchestrating a Ponzi scheme that swindled investors out of a staggering $191 million. Federal regulators have exposed their deceitful operation, which promised lucrative returns through the purchase of cattle. However, it has been revealed that Link and Wood never bought enough cattle to fulfill the financial obligations.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed a lawsuit in federal court, elucidating the details of the fraudulent scheme. In 2017, Link and Wood established Agridime LLC as a facade for their cattle investment venture. They enticed investors with the promise of remarkable returns, boasting rates as high as 32%.
The investment process seemed straightforward: investors paid $2,000 to acquire the rights to a head of cattle, leaving Agridime responsible for raising and feeding the animals. Profits were to be distributed once the livestock were slaughtered and sold for meat, thus concluding the investment cycle.
Agridime utilized multiple platforms, including their website and Facebook, to promote their investment opportunity. In their sales pitches, they acknowledged the skepticism surrounding their claims, admitting that it appeared too good to be true. Unfortunately, as regulators have now confirmed, this skepticism was well-founded.
The SEC’s lawsuit asserts that Agridime’s alluring investment proposition was nothing more than a mirage, designed to deceive unsuspecting investors. The aftermath of this gullibility has left countless individuals devastated.
At present, there has been no response from the attorney representing Link and Wood.
Unveiling a Multi-Million Dollar Fraud
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has taken decisive action in uncovering a Ponzi scheme orchestrated by Josh Link and Jed Wood, western ranchers accused of defrauding investors through cattle investments. The fraudulent operation, disguised as Agridime LLC, promised remarkable returns of up to 32%. However, it has now been revealed that the duo never purchased the necessary cattle to fulfill their financial obligations.
The Promise and the Deceit
Investors were enticed with a seemingly attractive proposition: acquiring the rights to a head of cattle for a mere $2,000. Agridime purported to handle the rearing and feeding of the cattle, ensuring a steady increase in investment value. It was only when the livestock was slaughtered and sold for meat that investors were supposed to receive their long-awaited profits.
However, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has successfully unmasked this elaborate ruse. In their lawsuit filed in federal court, the SEC underscores the fact that Agridime’s promises were far too good to be true.
A Shocking Revelation
Using various channels like their website and Facebook, Agridime conducted a widespread marketing campaign to lure in unsuspecting investors. Understandably, their claims were met with skepticism from potential investors who deemed the investment opportunity highly dubious. Agridime acknowledged this skepticism while asserting the legitimacy of their enterprise.
Regrettably, the skepticism expressed by potential investors was warranted. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has stated unequivocally that Agridime’s investment offering was nothing but an elaborate facade, designed to dupe victims into parting with their hard-earned money.
As the SEC proceeds with its legal action against Josh Link and Jed Wood, the attorney representing the accused parties has yet to respond to these grave allegations. The deceitful practices employed by Agridime have left investors in dire straits, further emphasizing the necessity for effective regulatory oversight and stringent punishment for those engaged in fraudulent activities.
Ponzi Scheme at Agridime: Investors Defrauded of $191 Million
An investigation has revealed that the owners of Agridime, Mark Link and Sarah Wood, have been operating a classic Ponzi scheme. Instead of purchasing enough cattle to sustain the business, they used money from new investors to pay off the older ones. This method allowed them to deceive a staggering 2,100 investors across 15 states, resulting in a total loss of $191 million.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has uncovered that the pair, along with other salespeople at Agridime, also collected undisclosed sales commissions of 10% on every dollar brought in. This additional income amounted to a whopping $11 million paid to Link, Wood, and their colleagues.
The SEC’s investigation revealed that $58 million of investor money was diverted to paying off previous investors. Shockingly, the company only had $1.5 million in the bank, despite owing a massive $147 million in principal and interest payments as of September. This information led the SEC to predict that the scheme is on the brink of collapse.
Agridime had previously faced legal action, as cease and desist orders were issued by officials in Arizona and North Dakota earlier this year. However, despite these orders, Link and Wood continued to offer cattle contracts in those states.