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Howard Ain, Troubleshooter: Woman Behind Scheme That Cost Investors Millions
CINCINNATI (Howard Ain) -- A woman promised high returns on investments, but instead caused lots of anxiety for hundreds of investors.
Local 12 TroubleShooter Howard Ain says the scammer came away with millions of dollars.
That's Kalin Dao in undercover video taken by postal inspectors. She is the mastermind behind a scheme that cost more than 500 investors at least $7 million dollars.
Robert Strande: "She offered a number of programs, either penny stock type investments, or investments in commodities, precious metals, things like that..."
Postal inspectors invested in Dao's company to learn about her business.
Strande: "She gladly took my money, sent me regular updates, investment statements categorizing how my investment was doing."
Those documents were all fake. Inspector Strande traveled to Las Vegas to attend an investors meeting with Dao and brought a hidden camera. He spoke with her about the transparency of her records.
Strande: "As far as reviewing the books, how, where are you located as far as doing that or sitting down and having a one on one meeting."
Kalin: "Yeah, we, we can have one on one meeting. That no problem. But, it have to be member."
Kalin: "You're not a member right now. Ah, I can't disclose that information to you."
Strande: "Okay. Well, that's what I don't quite understand as far as bringing on the new investors, but, you're not disclosing a lot of information to the new investors."
Kalin: "We not bringing on new investor. That what we trying to tell you."
Strande: "But, I mean, if you were, I mean, how, how, do you source of investors if you're not putting out information?"
Strande says there's an important takeaway here for every potential investor.
Strande: "Don't accept answers like... this is a private company, you're not entitled to look at the financials, I don't have to show you the financial records. Don't accept answers like that."
Strande also said another potential red flag was the presentation Dao gave - for example - this simple chart.
Strande: "She provided a Power Point presentation to the entire investment group and it looked as though a 2nd grader had done the art work."
Postal inspectors say the victims were devastated.
Strande: "It completely wiped them out financially. Most of them did not have disposable income."
Postal inspectors say Dao used the money to finance her lavish gambling trips to Las Vegas.