From the U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Alaska:
Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder announced today that a Washington man was sentenced to serve 10 years in prison for defrauding Alaskans with an advance fee scheme where he promised investors a significant return on an investment that did not actually exist. His wife was previously convicted on one count of social security fraud in Washington.
Floyd Jay Mann, Jr., 56, of Puyallup, Washington, was sentenced today by Chief U.S. District Judge Timothy M. Burgess to serve 10 years in prison, followed by a term of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay full restitution to the victims. Mann pleaded guilty in July 2017 to 11 counts of wire fraud and eight counts of money laundering in Alaska.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Aunnie Steward, who prosecuted the case, Mann defrauded individuals in Dillingham and elsewhere of approximately $2.7 million by falsely leading the victims to believe that he was the recipient of a multimillion-dollar settlement from a class-action lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company. Mann told victims that if they helped to pay his medical bills and other lawsuit-related expenses, the victims would be paid back plus a substantial return on their money, but only after Mann’s multimillion-dollar settlement was released by the court. In fact, Mann did not use the victim’s money to pay medical bills. There was no lawsuit settlement, and Mann used the money he obtained from the victims to gamble at a casino, collecting over $1 million in jackpots while receiving need-based social security benefits.
The scheme started when Mann first convinced an elderly neighbor who had cancer, and was formerly from Dillingham, that he too had cancer. Once Mann gained the neighbor’s sympathy and trust, Mann convinced the neighbor of the legitimacy of his fraudulent lawsuit. The neighbor gave so much money to Mann’s scheme he lost his house and then succumbed to his cancer. Meanwhile, Mann moved on to the elderly neighbor’s friends and relatives in Dillingham. Mann carried out his scheme over six years. Mann created fraudulent court documents and had co-conspirators assisting him with pretending to be judges and federal agents to corroborate his fraudulent stories to the victims.
According to Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Diggs, who prosecuted the case against Floyd Mann’s wife, Cheryl Mann, in the Western District of Washington, during the course of Floyd Mann’s scheme, he and his wife Cheryl Mann and their son collected approximately $81,000 in need-based Supplemental Security Income benefits. Cheryl Mann was the designated payee for Floyd Mann and their son and responsible for reporting any changes in the household income or assets. During this time, Cheryl Mann won approximately $125,000 by gambling at a casino. That income, as well as the funds obtained by her husband, disqualified the Manns from the public assistance they received. At her sentencing on July 7, 2017, Cheryl Mann was ordered to pay $81,000 in restitution and serve three years of probation.
“Floyd Mann preyed upon the sick and elderly. He ruined the lives of those who sadly placed their trust in him,” said First Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan Wilson. “I commend the members of this office and our law enforcement partners in their efforts to obtain this conviction and sentence.”
“Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time well-wishers have gotten robbed helping others in fake battles against cancer,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Joshua Bottjer. “IRS-CI Special Agents work diligently to stop criminals like Mann and others who commit crimes out of greed.”
In imposing the sentence, Judge Burgess noted that Mann was a “dogged, determined, charlatan” who caused “permanent financial and emotional damage to dozens of people.” Judge Burgess also commented that Mann was “sophisticated, devious, and calculating.”
The IRS-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and Social Security Administration-Office of Inspector General (SSA-OIG), conducted the investigation leading to the convictions in these cases.