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A Santa Rossa man has been sentenced to over 5 years in prison for money laundering and wire fraud.
Douglas Hollingsworth received a sentence of 64 months and was also ordered to pay $4.9m in damage payments for defrauding numerous individuals in a Ponzi scheme over a period of five years.
The sentence was handed down by the Honorable Charles R. Breyer, US District Court Judge. He also sentenced Hollingsworth to a three year period of supervised release with certain conditions that will limit his access to managing money of third parties.
Sixty-four year old Hollingsworth defrauded investors in his businesses, Baytree Investors Inc. and Capsule Partners.
He pleaded guilty to the charges in February of this year. It's understood that he told clients that he had developed a sophisticate computer system that could identify financial market trends and generate substantial profits from trading activity.
He then told individuals that if they loaned him money to invest, that he would be able to pay them significant monthly interest payments from the profit earned from successful trading.
Hollingsworth continued to target individuals with the scam, even though the FBI had searched his house in July of 2010 and he was later charged with wire fraud in 2011.
The money collected by Hollingsworth in the scam was spent by him on personal effects such as jewelry and to make some of the monthly interest payments to other people who unknowingly gave him money to 'invest'.
At the sentencing hearing, Judge Breyer ordered Hollingsworth to surrender immediately and begin serving his prison sentence.
He is now in custody.
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