Fla. man gets 8 years for $8 million Ponzi scheme

A Florida man was sentenced Friday to eight years in prison for running a Ponzi scheme that swindled hundreds of victims out of $8 million.

Court records indicate between 600 to 800 investors were victims of the scheme run by Stanley Shew-A-Tjon, 62, of Davie, Fla., who promised returns of 5 percent to 18 percent a month.

The eight-year sentence imposed Friday by Judge James Cacheris in federal court in Alexandria was much closer to the seven-year sentence sought by the defense than the 16-year sentence sought by prosecutors.

Shew-a-Tjon apologized for his actions, and his lawyer said that investors are likely to recover more than $3 million of their losses.

Shew-A-Tjon's sentence comes just two days after prosecutors at the same Alexandria courthouse obtained a 12-year sentence against Alan James Watson, 47, of Clinton Township, Mich., for running a bogus investment club that caused more than 900 investors to lose nearly all of the $40 million they gave him.

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia Neil MacBride, whose office prosecuted both cases, called Watson's promises to investors "a big fat lie, and he kept lying until his scheme collapsed."