Michael Winans Jr. Arrested for Running a Ponzi Scheme on Church Folk (video)
Michael Winans Jr., Arrested for running a Ponzi Scheme on Church Folk, say it ain’t so !!!
LANSING, Mich. (AP) -
Michael Winans Jr. a member of the Winans gospel-music family has been charged with fraud in an $8 million scam involving bogus bonds.
About Michael Winans Jr:
Michael Winans Jr. (Mike) is the son of Gospel performer Michael Winans (a member of the legendary Winans group). Mike first came to the public’s attention as part of the teen gospel group, Winans Phase 2. The third recording generation of the Winans family, Winans Phase 2 took the Gospel world by storm with their 1999 debut, We Got Next.
Music and performing have been apart of Mike Winans’ life since his birth. Being born in Glendale, California three days after his dad, Michael Winans Sr., won his first Grammy Award (1982) was a sign that Mike was headed for a life of musical excellence. Mike’s musical career began during his freshman year of high school singing and writing songs for the gospel and concert choirs at Martin Luther King Jr. high school. During his junior year, Mike along with his cousins Marvin Jr., Carvin Jr., and Juan formed the gospel group, Winans Phase 2 and signed a major recording deal with Word/Sony Records. Winans’ Phase 2 toured the world and achieved many accolades including a “Best New Gospel Artist” nomination at the 1999 Grammy Awards. In 2000, Mike decided it was time to charter a new territory, so he attended Schoolcraft College (Livonia, MI) with a major in Business Administration. After graduating from Schoolcraft College, Mike started his own music publishing company; Baby Mike Music Publishing Co. Baby Mike Music seemed to experience success practically from its conception. Through his company, Mike has had the pleasure of writing and producing songs for some of the top names in R&B music including New Edition, Avant, Diddy, Chris Brown, Danity Kane, Day 26, B5, Case, Michelle Williams and Mario Winans just to name a few. Mike has produced music on 5 Billboard #1 albums and 4 platinum albums so far in his music career.
Federal prosecutors in Detroit filed the charge this week against Michael Winans Jr. His attorney, William Hatchett, said Thursday that a guilty plea is expected at an undetermined date.
The government says Winans knew the Saudi Arabian oil bonds weren’t real, but he continued to accept money from more than 1,000 investors in 2007 and 2008. The court document says Winans recycled the money among investors and also used cash for his personal use.
State regulators in 2010 said Winans used connections in Detroit churches to lure investors.
Michael Winans Jr. Plead guilty to the crime and will be sentenced in February, 2013. He faces 30 years in prison. (SMH)
Watch the Fox investigation of the Michael Winans Jr. Ponzi Scheme below: