Agents of the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) arrested a man on Tuesday in connection with what they allege is a “multi-year scheme to defraud investors of over $80,000.”
Nicholas Joseph Lopez Jr., 50, of Columbia, S.C. was charged with three counts of violating the uniform securities act after allegedly “selling unauthorized or false securities then personally using the money.”
Probable cause affidavits associated with the warrants for Lopez’s arrest indicate three alleged scams. In the first alleged scam, he is accused of “selling securities and employing a device, scheme or artifice to defraud two investors of $15,000” from July 2017 through March of this year.
Lopez is accused of telling investors that their stake in a company called “Tape Wrangler LLC” would begin producing revenue streams in December of 2017.
“This proved not to be true,” the affidavit alleged.
Lopez is also accused of making several false claims related to this company, whose representatives confirmed to investigators that he was “not authorized to sell investments in the product.”
In the second case, Lopez is accused of “defrauding a client in excess of $42,000” related to an investment in a company called Low Country Apps LLC. Investigators claim he provided the victim of this $42,000 fraud with “false documents” – including fictitious tax forms. This alleged scam ran from April 2017 through May of this year, according to investigators.
The registered agent for Low Country Apps LLC confirmed to investigators that Lopez was “not authorized” to take those actions.
In the third case, from November 2015 and March 2016, Lopez is accused of defrauding an investor of $25,000 related to an invention. Lopez allegedly promised the victim a return of $167,000 – but none of that money materialized and Lopez’s bank records reportedly “reflected personal use of the money.”
Here are the warrants …
Lopez was booked at the Alvin S. Glenn detention center in Richland County, S.C. (a facility which refuses to post mug shots of inmates it detains). His case will be prosecuted by the office of S.C. attorney general Alan Wilson.
As this news outlet frequently reminds readers, Lopez – like any defendant – should be considered innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt by our criminal justice system (or until such time as he may wish to formally enter a pleading in connection with the charge against him).
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