POMPANO BEACH, FLA. – The former CEO of MJ Capital Funding, LLC has been charged with orchestrating an investment Ponzi fraud scheme that amassed approximately $190.7 million from the company.
The indictment, issued by a federal grand jury in South Florida, alleges that Johanna Michely Garcia, aged 40 and residing in Broward County, conspired to commit wire fraud, mail fraud, multiple instances of wire fraud, mail fraud, and money laundering.
The Department of Justice conveyed this information in a press release. MJ Capital Funding, LLC, headquartered in Pompano Beach, specializes in offering merchant cash advances (MCAs) to small and medium-sized businesses.
The indictment claims that between October 2020 and August 12, 2021, Garcia, together with Pavel Ramon Ruiz Hernandez and associates, deceitfully gathered funds from investors, falsely presenting them as investments for MCAs. They also enlisted recruits to draw in additional investors, receiving a 10% commission.
Garcia made an appearance in the U.S. Magistrate Court on Friday, with a subsequent hearing planned for August 28. Should she be found guilty, Garcia could potentially face a maximum of 20 years in prison for each count of conspiracy, money laundering, and mail fraud.
Additionally, each money laundering offense could carry a sentence of up to 10 years. Her co-conspirator, Ruiz Hernandez, entered a guilty plea in April 2023 and is scheduled for sentencing on September 7th.