A San Jose man is in jail on $1 million bail after the Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney's Office charged him with embezzling money from people who believed they had been investing in future funeral costs on Thursday.
The District Attorney's Office said they charged 52-year-old Davie Ba Ngo with victimizing about 300 people, most of whom were seniors.
Ngo, manager of the now defunct "Concerned Members Committee," is accused of collecting membership fees, monthly dues, and annual dues from the victims from 2000 until 2011 in exchange for promising to pay a lump sum "funeral benefit" to their beneficiary when they died.
The promised amounts varied based on how long each person had been a "member" of Ngo's program but ranged from $6,000 to $14,000.
Ngo is accused of not making good on the payments, paying families and beneficiaries late, partially or not at all.
"Mr. Ngo's actions have caused harm to the members of the "Concerned Members Committee" and their families, who trusted him to manage the company and its money. He abused that trust," said Deputy District Attorney Georg Behrens.
Ngo was charged with theft by embezzlement, theft by false pretenses, sale of an unqualified security, fraudulent securities scheme, money laundering, unlawful structuring of transactions, and insufficient check funds.
If convicted, Ngo faces up to 11 years in prison.
Ngo's co-defendant and fellow employee is also charged with grand theft and faces up to three-years incarceration.
—By Bay City News