Edmundo Rubi, 52; Joseph Encarnacion, 59; Benjamin Hebron, 51; and Gloria Hebron, 53, have been charged with 54 felony counts, including Conspiracy to Commit Securities Fraud, Securities Fraud, Sale of Unqualified Securities, Grand Theft, Perjury, Foreclosure Consultant Fraud, and Rent Skimming. The defendants face up to 15 years in state prison if convicted.
Rubi was convicted in 2005 for masterminding the so-called “Knights Express” Ponzi scheme which swindled $24 million from 425 victims, most of whom were members of the Filipino community living in the South Bay of California. In meetings in homes and a Mission Valley, California office, he sold investors on the idea that his companies would purchase U.S. government obligations at a discount overseas and sell them at a profit. Rubi was convicted and sentenced to 70 months in custody but was on supervised release when he began the new scam.
Rubi was re-arrested last July after a joint investigation began between the San Diego County, California, District Attorney’s office and the FBI.
The new indictment alleges that Rubi and Encarnacion recruited former victims of the “Knight Express” Ponzi scheme, as well as others from the San Diego, California, Filipino community, to participate in an investment scam dubbed the “Apocalypse Trust” and “Amerisian Trust.” As part of the scam, 22 people quit-claimed 34 properties into various fraudulent trusts, owned by Rubi and administered by Ben and Gloria Hebron. Rubi was prohibited at the time from having any contact with investors or financial accounts as part of his federal parole.
FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Keith Slotter commented, “Mr. Rubi’s recidivism into this type of crime demonstrates his disregard for engaging in legitimate business practices. The FBI is committed to investigating individuals who plot these types of schemes which bilk many out of their hard-earned dollars, homes and life savings
San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie M. Dumanis and FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Keith Slotter announced the Grand Jury indictment.
“Defendant Rubi brazenly ignored the conditions of his parole and went right back to committing the same types of crimes,” said DA Dumanis.