John Sabo arrested and charged in federal “upfront-fee” fraud scheme

A Florida man who previously resided in Spring Lake, New Jersey, was arrested and charged with defrauding multiple victims out of nearly $2 million through an “upfront-fee” scheme.

John Sabo, 69, of Naples, Florida, is charged by complaint with two counts of wire fraud. He was arrested and made his initial appearance on Nov. 17, 2022, in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

John Sabo

According to U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger, documents filed in this case and statements made in court, Sabo fraudulently induced his multiple victims to pay him thousands of dollars in “up-front” fees from November 2014 through the present.

Sabo falsely represented that, through his company Bankers Capital LLC, he could secure financing and collateral that the victims could use for their businesses.

However, federal prosecutors charge that neither Sabo nor Bankers Capital possessed or had access to the financing and collateral that he promised.

Instead of using the victims’ money as promised, he diverted millions of dollars out of Bankers Capital, primarily for personal expenses, which included payments to Sabo’s creditors and over $250,000 in golf-related expenses.

In total, Sellinger claims that Sabo’s scheme resulted in over $1.77 million in losses to victims.

Each charge of wire fraud carries a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross amount of gain or loss from the offense, whichever is greater.

Sabo started in the Securities Industry in 1975 in the Officer Training Program of Thomson, McKinnon, Auchenklaus, Kohlmeyer, and Parker. He joined Fidelity Union Trust Company the following year as the co-manager of the Government and Municipal Bond Division of the Bank.

Sabo worked with the bank’s corporate and municipal clients helping them structure debt transactions for distribution to institutional clients. Sabo also managed the fixed income trading desk where he was responsible for the bank’s entire corporate and municipal bond positions.

In 1979 Sabo co-founded Atlantic Securities as chairman and CEO., where he was involved with financing over 350 transactions and has extensive experience in the development of proprietary trading products which he specialized and developed for over 30 years.

In 2000 Sabo sold Atlantic Securities to PNC Bank and worked as their regional manager until the end of the year.

After completing the sale of his Firm, Sabo joined a multi-billion dollar New York investment hedge fund where he helped companies obtain financing through convertible and straight debt structures along with equity issuance until 2002.

In 2003 Sabo became president of one of the largest Canadian investment banking firms financing transactions primarily in the natural resource sector. Sabo managed the company until 2009.

Sabo’s website said that he oversees all of the Bankers Capital’s operations.

Sabo graduated from Seton Hall University in 1975 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance.

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