Former basketball coach accused in Ponzi scheme

Robert Schnepp

Robert Schnepp

A former basketball coach at south Fort Myers' Cypress Lake High School is accused of a Ponzi scheme that bilked investors out of about $200,000.

Robert Schnepp was arrested Thursday, his 51st birthday, in Hudson, Fla.

Investigators said Schnepp told friends, teachers and fellow coaches that he was an investment adviser and began soliciting money from them. Schnepp sent out fake quarterly statements indicating the investments were doing well, authorities said.

Detectives began to investigate after an investor who asked to cash in some returns received checks from Schnepp that bounced.

Investigators said Schnepp's Ponzi scheme ran from 2008 to 2011, with the coach using the money to pay previous investors and pay personal expenses. Schnepp was not a licensed investment adviser in Florida during that period, officials said.

Schnepp faces nearly three dozen felony charges of defrauding investors, according to the Lee County Sheriff's Office. He is currently jailed in Pasco County awaiting transfer back to Lee.

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