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Alleged fraudster Jones withdrew more than $12.3 million from account: auditor

MONTREAL - Alleged Ponzi schemer Earl Jones personally withdrew more than $12.3 million from his company's account, says an audit of his records released Tuesday.

MONTREAL - Alleged Ponzi schemer Earl Jones personally withdrew more than $12.3 million from his company's account, says an audit of his records released Tuesday.

Accounting firm RSM Richter, the interim receiver for Jones, says he took out almost $3 million in payments from his company as well as $593,000 for his children's schooling and other expenses, $169,000 for car purchases, and a sum of $497,000 that was later transferred to Bermuda.

The report was released at the first meeting of Jones' creditors.

The auditor says Jones also appears to have cashed in his RRSPs, an insurance policy and investments earlier this year.

The sums withdrawn were likely higher than $12.3 million, according to the auditor.

That figure does not include transfers before 1987.

Bankruptcy trustee Gilles Robillard also says banking records can't be found for the years 2000 to 2008.

Between 100 and 150 investors have accused Jones of bilking them out of millions of dollars, while Quebec's financial securities regulator has alleged the amount could be as high as $50 million.

The Montrealer has been charged with four counts each of fraud and theft and has been ordered to appear in court Sept. 28.

RSM Richter has written to 93 parties to inquire about dealings they had with Jones, including 50 banks in Canada, the United States, Bermuda, Britain, Switzerland and the Cayman Islands.

The parties have also been asked to freeze all of his accounts.

Jones's company declared bankruptcy last month, and RSM Richter says it expects him to file for personal bankruptcy as early as Wednesday.

 
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