Saginaw man accused in ponzi-scheme to return to Michigan

Joel Wilson of Saginaw is faces 9 charges in Bay County tied to an alleged ponzi-scheme.

Joel Wilson of Saginaw is faces 9 charges in Bay County tied to an alleged ponzi-scheme.

A Saginaw man accused of running a multi-million dollar ponzi-scheme is being returned to mid-Michigan, after more than a year on the lam in Europe.

Joel Wilson is accused of bilking investors out of $8.5 million, in a scheme tied to real estate investments in the Saginaw and Bay City areas.

Wilson allegedly was recruiting investors to help him purchase distressed properties. The plan was for him to fix the properties up, and then sell them for a profit.

But the profits apparently never came, and the Attorney General’s office says Wilson was forced to recruit new investors. He then allegedly used their money to pay returns to previous investors.

As investigators were closing in on the operation in late-2012, Wilson fled to Germany.

He was arrested by police in Dresden earlier this year, and the extradition process is expected to be completed this week.

He’ll arrive in Detroit, under the escort of U.S. Marshals, on Thursday. He faces arraignment in Bay County on Friday.