Fraudster, who fled to Canada, jailed for 17.5 years

Fraudster, who fled to Canada, jailed for 17.5 years

Fraudster, who fled to Canada, jailed for 17.5 years A U.S. man, who fled to Canada in 2008 after being convicted of bilking investors out of about $1 million, has been sentenced to 17.5 years in jail.

Thomas Qualls, 45, former president of International Foreign Currency, Inc., was convicted in 2008, after failing to appear in court the day closing arguments were set to begin during his four-week trial. The jury found him guilty on all charges including mail fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy, and obstruction of justice.

Under the guise of his firm, Qualls promised investors hefty returns on foreign currencies. Meanwhile, he was using their funds on business and personal expenses including a Caribbean cruise and Jaguar.

The accused was tracked down by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in Montreal in 2009 and imprisoned on a fugitive warrant. After a lengthy court battle - during which Qualls challenged extradition and unsuccessfully filed for refugee status - he was finally returned to the U.S. in 2012.

Qualls was ordered by a U.S. district judge on Friday to serve 210 months in prison. He must also pay a restitution fine of about $817,000.

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  • Viviane 2014-03-10 2:40:47 PM
    ...and Vincent Lacroix of Norbourg is out on the street in Montreal. There is no justice in Canada for victims of white collar fraudsters.
    We need real sentences as in the U.S. for economic crimes.
    Post a reply
  • Ken MacCoy, CHS 2014-03-10 4:16:54 PM
    Quails gets 17.5 years from a U.S. court for ripping off $1 million from investors; while a Cdn. court only gave Earl Jones 11 years for his $50-million Ponzi scheme.

    Meaning Jones will be eligible for 'early release' after what ... 8 years? Something wrong with this picture.

    The Canadian courts need to start sending a stronger message!
    Post a reply