Prosecutors say the scam may be the largest in the history of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Sacramento, one that bilked investors out of nearly $1 billion and generated a lavish lifestyle for its perpetrators that included more than 150 exotic sports cars and antique vehicles, vacation villas from Lake Tahoe to the Caribbean and even ownership of a minor league baseball team.
On Tuesday in federal court in Sacramento, Jeffrey Carpoff, the man behind the massive fraud, learned the penalty for his crimes: a 30-year prison sentence and an order to pay more than $790 million in restitution.
Carpoff and his wife, Paulette, pleaded guilty in January 2020 to taking part in the Ponzi scheme involving their Benicia-based DC Solar Solutions company, plea deals that came after months of negotiations.
Carpoff acknowledged his guilt Tuesday, saying he took responsibility for the losses, but he insisted that he tried to make his investors whole by telling prosecutors about company assets that they did not know about.
The case involved the lease of mobile solar-powered generators that DC Solar was marketing for use at racetracks, concert venues and other locations, and prosecutors say Carpoff lied to investors about how many of the devices his company actually had produced, eventually inducing others to commit crimes along with his, court papers say.
— Sacramento Bee —
For more information, see this article from 2019.